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Sample records for artificial disc activ

  1. The activArtificial Disc: a next-generation motion-preserving implant for chronic lumbar discogenic pain

    PubMed Central

    Yue, James J; Garcia, Rolando; Miller, Larry E

    2016-01-01

    Degeneration of the lumbar intervertebral discs is a leading cause of chronic low back pain in adults. Treatment options for patients with chronic lumbar discogenic pain unresponsive to conservative management include total disc replacement (TDR) or lumbar fusion. Until recently, only two lumbar TDRs had been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration − the Charité Artificial Disc in 2004 and the ProDisc-L Total Disc Replacement in 2006. In June 2015, a next-generation lumbar TDR received Food and Drug Administration approval − the activArtificial Disc (Aesculap Implant Systems). Compared to previous-generation lumbar TDRs, the activArtificial Disc incorporates specific design enhancements that result in a more precise anatomical match and allow a range of motion that better mimics the healthy spine. The results of mechanical and clinical studies demonstrate that the activArtificial Disc results in improved mechanical and clinical outcomes versus earlier-generation artificial discs and compares favorably to lumbar fusion. The purpose of this report is to describe the activArtificial Disc including implant characteristics, intended use, surgical technique, postoperative care, mechanical testing, and clinical experience to date. PMID:27274317

  2. The activL(®) Artificial Disc: a next-generation motion-preserving implant for chronic lumbar discogenic pain.

    PubMed

    Yue, James J; Garcia, Rolando; Miller, Larry E

    2016-01-01

    Degeneration of the lumbar intervertebral discs is a leading cause of chronic low back pain in adults. Treatment options for patients with chronic lumbar discogenic pain unresponsive to conservative management include total disc replacement (TDR) or lumbar fusion. Until recently, only two lumbar TDRs had been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration - the Charité Artificial Disc in 2004 and the ProDisc-L Total Disc Replacement in 2006. In June 2015, a next-generation lumbar TDR received Food and Drug Administration approval - the activL(®) Artificial Disc (Aesculap Implant Systems). Compared to previous-generation lumbar TDRs, the activL(®) Artificial Disc incorporates specific design enhancements that result in a more precise anatomical match and allow a range of motion that better mimics the healthy spine. The results of mechanical and clinical studies demonstrate that the activL(®) Artificial Disc results in improved mechanical and clinical outcomes versus earlier-generation artificial discs and compares favorably to lumbar fusion. The purpose of this report is to describe the activL(®) Artificial Disc including implant characteristics, intended use, surgical technique, postoperative care, mechanical testing, and clinical experience to date.

  3. The activL(®) Artificial Disc: a next-generation motion-preserving implant for chronic lumbar discogenic pain.

    PubMed

    Yue, James J; Garcia, Rolando; Miller, Larry E

    2016-01-01

    Degeneration of the lumbar intervertebral discs is a leading cause of chronic low back pain in adults. Treatment options for patients with chronic lumbar discogenic pain unresponsive to conservative management include total disc replacement (TDR) or lumbar fusion. Until recently, only two lumbar TDRs had been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration - the Charité Artificial Disc in 2004 and the ProDisc-L Total Disc Replacement in 2006. In June 2015, a next-generation lumbar TDR received Food and Drug Administration approval - the activL(®) Artificial Disc (Aesculap Implant Systems). Compared to previous-generation lumbar TDRs, the activL(®) Artificial Disc incorporates specific design enhancements that result in a more precise anatomical match and allow a range of motion that better mimics the healthy spine. The results of mechanical and clinical studies demonstrate that the activL(®) Artificial Disc results in improved mechanical and clinical outcomes versus earlier-generation artificial discs and compares favorably to lumbar fusion. The purpose of this report is to describe the activL(®) Artificial Disc including implant characteristics, intended use, surgical technique, postoperative care, mechanical testing, and clinical experience to date. PMID:27274317

  4. Artificial Disc Replacement

    MedlinePlus

    ... treat this condition, alternatives to disc replacement include fusion, nonoperative care or no treatment. Typically, surgery is ... operative treatment for disc pain has been spinal fusion. This is a surgical procedure in which disc ...

  5. The artificial disc: theory, design and materials.

    PubMed

    Bao, Q B; McCullen, G M; Higham, P A; Dumbleton, J H; Yuan, H A

    1996-06-01

    Low back pain is one of the most common medical conditions in the Western world. Disc degeneration, an inevitable process of aging, of variable rate and degree, is one of the major causes of low back pain. Currently, there are two major surgical interventions for treating conditions related to the degenerative disc: discectomy and fusion. Although discectomy and fusion produce a relatively good short-term clinical result in relieving pain, both these surgical treatments alter the biomechanics of the spine, possibly leading to further degeneration of the surrounding tissues and the discs at adjacent levels. Over the past 35 years, a tremendous effort has been made to develop an artificial disc to replace the degenerated disc. The goal is the restoration of the natural biomechanics of the segment after disc excision, thus relieving pain and preventing further degeneration at adjacent segments. However, the artificial disc faces a complex biomechanical environment which makes replication of the biomechanics difficult and long-term survival challenging to designs and materials. The purpose of this article is to examine the factors of importance in designing a disc replacement. Topics covered include the structure and function of the natural disc, the changes that occur with disc degeneration and existing methods of treatment for the degenerative spine. The progress in achieving a functional, long-lasting disc replacement is outlined.

  6. Gradient composite materials for artificial intervertebral discs.

    PubMed

    Migacz, Katarzyna; Chłopek, Jan; Morawska-Chochół, Anna; Ambroziak, Maciej

    2014-01-01

    Composites with the gradient of Young's modulus constitute a new group of biomimetic materials which affect the proper distribution of stresses between the implant and the bone. The aim of this article was to examine the mechanical properties of gradient materials based on carbon fibre-polysulfone composite, and to compare them to the properties of a natural intervertebral disc. Gradient properties were provided by different orientation or volume fraction of carbon fibres in particular layers of composites. The results obtained during in vitro tests displayed a good durability of the gradient materials put under long-term static load. However, the configuration based on a change in the volume fraction of the fibres seems more advantageous than the one based on a change of the fibres' orientation. The materials under study were designed to replace the intervertebral disc. The effect of Young's modulus of the material layers on the stress distribution between the tissue and the implant was analyzed and the biomimetic character of the gradient composites was stated. Unlike gradient materials, the pure polysulfone and the non-gradient composite resulted in the stress concentration in the region of nucleus pulposus, which is highly disadvantageous and does not occur in the stress distribution of natural intervertebral discs.

  7. ISASS Policy Statement – Lumbar Artificial Disc

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Rolando

    2015-01-01

    Purpose The primary goal of this Policy Statement is to educate patients, physicians, medical providers, reviewers, adjustors, case managers, insurers, and all others involved or affected by insurance coverage decisions regarding lumbar disc replacement surgery. Procedures This Policy Statement was developed by a panel of physicians selected by the Board of Directors of ISASS for their expertise and experience with lumbar TDR. The panel's recommendation was entirely based on the best evidence-based scientific research available regarding the safety and effectiveness of lumbar TDR. PMID:25785243

  8. Disc Golf: Teaching a Lifetime Activity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eastham, Susan L.

    2015-01-01

    Disc golf is a lifetime activity that can be enjoyed by students of varying skill levels and abilities. Disc golf follows the principles of ball golf but is generally easier for students to play and enjoy success. The object of disc golf is similar to ball golf and involves throwing a disc from the teeing area to the target in as few throws as…

  9. Artificial Discs for Lumbar and Cervical Degenerative Disc Disease –Update

    PubMed Central

    2006-01-01

    Executive Summary Objective To assess the safety and efficacy of artificial disc replacement (ADR) technology for degenerative disc disease (DDD). Clinical Need Degenerative disc disease is the term used to describe the deterioration of 1 or more intervertebral discs of the spine. The prevalence of DDD is roughly described in proportion to age such that 40% of people aged 40 years have DDD, increasing to 80% among those aged 80 years or older. Low back pain is a common symptom of lumbar DDD; neck and arm pain are common symptoms of cervical DDD. Nonsurgical treatments can be used to relieve pain and minimize disability associated with DDD. However, it is estimated that about 10% to 20% of people with lumbar DDD and up to 30% with cervical DDD will be unresponsive to nonsurgical treatments. In these cases, surgical treatment is considered. Spinal fusion (arthrodesis) is the process of fusing or joining 2 bones and is considered the surgical gold standard for DDD. Artificial disc replacement is the replacement of the degenerated intervertebral disc with an artificial disc in people with DDD of the lumbar or cervical spine that has been unresponsive to nonsurgical treatments for at least 6 months. Unlike spinal fusion, ADR preserves movement of the spine, which is thought to reduce or prevent the development of adjacent segment degeneration. Additionally, a bone graft is not required for ADR, and this alleviates complications, including bone graft donor site pain and pseudoarthrosis. It is estimated that about 5% of patients who require surgery for DDD will be candidates for ADR. Review Strategy The Medical Advisory Secretariat conducted a computerized search of the literature published between 2003 and September 2005 to answer the following questions: What is the effectiveness of ADR in people with DDD of the lumbar or cervical regions of the spine compared with spinal fusion surgery? Does an artificial disc reduce the incidence of adjacent segment degeneration (ASD

  10. A meta-analysis of artificial total disc replacement versus fusion for lumbar degenerative disc disease

    PubMed Central

    Yajun, Wu; Xiuxin, Han; Cui, Cui

    2010-01-01

    Lumbar fusion has been developed for several decades and became the standard surgical treatment for symptomatic lumbar degenerative disc disease (DDD). Artificial total disc replacement (TDR), as an alternative for spinal arthrodesis, is becoming more commonly employed treating lumbar DDD. It is still uncertain whether TDR is more effective and safer than lumbar fusion. To systematically compare the effectiveness and safety of TDR to that of the fusion for the treatment of lumbar DDD, we performed a meta-analysis. Cochrane review methods were used to analyze all relevant randomized controlled trials published up to July 2009. Five relevant randomized controlled trials involving 837 patients were identified. Patients in TDR group have sightly better functioning and less back or leg pain without clinical significance, and significantly higher satisfaction status in TDR group compared with lumbar fusion group at the 2-year follow-up. But these outcomes are highly influenced by the study with BAK cage interbody fusion, the function/pain and patient satisfaction status are no longer significantly different between two groups after excluding this study. At 5 years, these outcomes are not significantly different between comparing groups. The complication and reoperation rate of two groups are similar both at 2 and at 5 years. In conclusion, TDR does not show significant superiority for the treatment of lumbar DDD compared with fusion. The benefits of motion preservation and the long-term complications are still unable to be concluded. More high-quality RCTs with long-term follow-up are needed. PMID:20364392

  11. Biomechanical effects of semi-constrained integrated artificial discs on zygapophysial joints of implanted lumbar segments

    PubMed Central

    ZHENG, SHENG-NAI; YAO, QING-QIANG; WANG, LI-MING; HU, WEN-HAO; WEI, BO; XU, YAN; ZHANG, DONG-SHENG

    2013-01-01

    This study aimed to optimize the design and application of semi-constrained integrated artificial discs (SIADs) using a finite element (FE) analysis following implantation, wherein the zygapophysial joints of the segment were biomechanically reconstructed. An FE model of the L4–L5 segment was constructed. Variations in the stresses on the discs and zygapophysial joints were observed during 5° anteflexion, 5° extension and 5° rotation under the 400-N applied axial load. Stresses and load translation analyses of the discs and zygapophysial joints were conducted during anteflexion, extension and rotation under the 400-N applied axial load. Following implantation of the lumbar segments, the stresses on the SIAD zygapophysial joints were not significantly different from those of physiological discs during anteflexion, and these were both marginally greater compared with those of non-constrained artificial discs (NADs). During extension, the increase in the stress on the SIAD zygapophysial joints was less than that on NAD zygapophysial joints. Stresses on the NAD zygapophysial joints were higher than those on SIAD and physiological discs during rotation. The stress on the SIAD zygapophysial joints was not significantly different from that on physiological discs during rotation. For SIADs and NADs, the stresses on the zygapophysial joints and the displacements of the discs were greater compared with those of the physiological discs during extension. The SIADs affected the variations in the stresses on the implanted segment more than the NADs, and the SIADs protected the zygapophysial joints of the implanted segment to a higher degree than the NADs. PMID:24255672

  12. Cervical Footprint Anthropometry in Indian Population: Implications on Design of Artificial Disc Replacement Devices

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Vishwanath Mahabaleshwar; Bangalore, Shashidhar Kantharajanna; Saraf, Abhishek

    2016-01-01

    Study Design Cross-sectional study. Purpose To accurately measure the dimensions of cervical endplates based on computed tomography (CT) scans in Indian population and assess accuracy of match with currently available cervical disc prostheses. Overview of Literature The dimensions of currently available cervical disc replacement implants are based on early published geometrical measurements of vertebrae endplates for Caucasian population. To author's knowledge, similar study has not been published for patients from Indian subcontinent. Methods CT scans of cervical spine of patients from Indian subcontinent were collected and reviewed. Seventy patients (54 men and 16 women; aged 18–56 years with average of 37 years) who underwent CT scans of cervical spine were included in study. 3D CT scans of sub axial cervical spine (C3 to C7) were analyzed. The anterior-posterior (AP) and central mediolateral (CML) dimensions of superior and inferior endplates from C3 to C7 were measured using digital measuring system. Results A total of 560 endplates of 70 patients were included in the study. The AP diameter of cervical endplates ranged from 0.87 to 2.47 cm. The CML diameters ranged from 0.84 to 2.98 cm. For levels C3/C4 and C4/C5 for AP dimension Prestige-LP (90.5%) and Prodisc-C (89%) discs showed higher percentage of matching than Discover discs (58.5%). For CML diameter, Prestige-LP (69.5%), Prodisc-C (70%) and Discover (39.5%) discs showed almost similar matching with measured endplates. For levels C5/C6 and C6/C7 for AP dimension, Prestige-LP (67.25%), Prodisc-C (49.35%) and Discover (51.5%) discs showed similar matching. For CML diameter Prestige-LP (32%), Prodisc-C (27.5%) and Discover (42.2%) discs showed poor matching with measured endplates. Conclusions This study indicates need for redesign of cervical disc prostheses to match Indian patients. The collected anthropometric dimensions from this study may be used to design and develop indigenous artificial total disc

  13. Biotribological evaluation of artificial disc arthroplasty devices: influence of loading and kinematic patterns during in vitro wear simulation

    PubMed Central

    Yue, James J.; Garcia, Rolando; Basson, Janet; Schwiesau, Jens; Fritz, Bernhard; Blömer, Wilhelm

    2008-01-01

    Wear simulation is an essential pre-clinical method to predict the mid- and long-term clinical wear behavior of newly introduced devices for total disc arthroplasty. The main requirement of a suitable method for spinal wear simulation has to be the ability to distinguish between design concepts and allow for a direct comparison of predicate devices. The objective of our study was to investigate the influence of loading and kinematic patterns based on two different protocols for spinal wear simulation (ISO/FDIS 18192-1 (2006) and ASTM F2423-05). In vitro wear simulation was performed with six activ® L lumbar artificial disc devices (Aesculap Tuttlingen, Germany). The applied kinematic pattern of movement was multidirectional for ISO (elliptic track) and unidirectional with a curvilinear shape for ASTM. Testing was done for 10 million cycles in the ISO loading mode and afterwards with the same specimens for 5 million cycles according to the ASTM protocol with a customized six-station servohydraulic spinal wear simulator (EndoLab Thansau, Germany). Gravimetrical and geometrical wear assessment, a slide track analysis correlated to an optical surface characterization, and an estimation of particle size and morphology were performed. The gravimetric wear rate for the first 10 million cycles was ISOinitial = 2.7 ± 0.3 mg/million cycles. During the ASTM test period (10–15 million cycles) a gravimetric wear rate of 0.14 ± 0.06 mg/million cycles was estimated. The wear rates between the ISO and ASTM driven simulations differ substantially (approximately 20-fold) and statistical analysis demonstrates a significant difference (p < 0.001) between the test groups. The main explanation of divergency between ISO and ASTM driven wear simulations is the multidirectional pattern of movement described in the ISO document resulting in a cross-shear stress on the polyethylene material. Due to previous retrieval observations, it seems to be very unlikely that a lumbar

  14. Hybrid Strategy of Two-Level Cervical Artificial Disc and Intervertebral Cage

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Tzu-Tsao; Hueng, Dueng-Yuan; Lin, Shang-Chih

    2015-01-01

    Abstract This numerical study aimed to evaluate tissue and implant responses to the hybrid surgery (HS) of cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR) and anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). Four hybrid strategies of two-level C-ADR and ACDF were compared in terms of adjacent segment degeneration (ASD) and implant failure. The rotary C-ADR and semirigid ACDF have been extensively used in the multilevel treatment of cervical instability and degeneration, but the constrained mobility at the ACDF segments can induce postoperative ASD problems. Hybrid surgery of C-ADR and ACDF has been an alternative to provide the optimal tradeoff between surgical cost and ASD problems. The biomechanical effects of hybrid strategies warrant thorough investigation for the two-level instrumentation. Based on computed tomography imaging, a nonlinear C2–C7 model was developed and validated by cadaveric and numerical data. Four strategies of inserting the C-ADR and ACDF into the C4–C6 segments were systematically arranged as PP (2 peek cages), AA (2 artificial discs), PA, and AP. The biomechanical behavior of these 4 strategies was evaluated in terms of motion and stresses of discs, facet forces, stresses of C-ADR and ACDF, and C-ADR motion. The constrained mobility of the ACDF segment worsened the kinematic and mechanical demands of the adjacent segments and artificial discs. The C-ADR articulation provided higher mobility than the replaced disc of the intact construct, making it an effective buffer to accommodate the compensated mobility and load from the ACDF segment. Consequently, the ASD progression of the AA construct was most restricted, followed by the PA, AP, and PP construct. The PA strategy is a tradeoff to preserve mobility and reduce cost. The C-ADR of the PA construct preserves the mobility of the C5/C6 segment and shares the transferred motion and loads of the fused C4/C5 segment. The PA construct shows optimal biomechanical results for minimizing ASD and

  15. Long term preservation of motion with artificial cervical disc implants: A comparison between cervical disc replacement and rigid fusion with cage

    PubMed Central

    Cincu, Rafael; Lorente, Francisco de Asis; Gomez, Joaquin; Eiras, Jose; Agrawal, Amit

    2014-01-01

    Background: With the advancement of technologies there is more interest in the maintenance of the spine's biomechanical properties focusing on the preservation of the functional motion segment. In present article we describe our experience with 25 cases managed with artificial cervical discs with 28 Solis cage following cervical discectomy with a mean follow-up period of 7.5 year. Materials and Methods: All surgeries were performed by single surgeon from March 2004 to June 2005 with a follow-up till date. Patients with symptomatic single or multiple level diseases that had no prior cervical surgery were candidates for the study. Cohort demographics were comparable. Standardized clinical outcome measures and radiographic examinations were used at prescribed post-operative intervals to compare the treatment groups. Relief in radicular pain, cervical spine motion, and degenerative changes at follow-up were noted. Results: In a total 53 cases, the mean age in prosthesis group was 47 years (age range: 30-63 years) and mean age in cage group was 44 years (32-62 years). Mean hospital stay was 2.7 days in both the groups. At 4 weeks complete cervical movements could be achieved in 19 cases in artificial disc group. Maintenance of movement after 7.5 years was in 76% of these patients. Lordosis was maintained in all cases till date. There was no mortality or wound infection in our series. Conclusions: We conclude that artificial cervical disc could be an alternative to fixed spinal fusion as it represents the most physiological substitute of disc. However, there is need for further studies to support the use of artificial cervical disc prosthesis. PMID:25685218

  16. Effect of an artificial disc on lumbar spine biomechanics: a probabilistic finite element study

    PubMed Central

    Mann, Anke; Zander, Thomas; Bergmann, Georg

    2008-01-01

    The effects of different parameters on the mechanical behaviour of the lumbar spine were in most cases determined deterministically with only one uncertain parameter varied at a time while the others were kept fixed. Thus most parameter combinations were disregarded. The aim of the study was to determine in a probabilistic finite element study how intervertebral rotation, intradiscal pressure, and contact force in the facet joints are affected by the input parameters implant position, implant ball radius, presence of scar tissue, and gap size in the facet joints. An osseoligamentous finite element model of the lumbar spine ranging from L3 vertebra to L5/S1 intervertebral disc was used. An artificial disc with a fixed center of rotation was inserted at level L4/L5. The model was loaded with pure moments of 7.5 Nm to simulate flexion, extension, lateral bending, and axial torsion. In a probabilistic study the implant position in anterior–posterior (ap) and in lateral direction, the radius of the implant ball, and the gap size of the facet joint were varied. After implanting an artificial disc, scar tissue may develop, replacing the anterior longitudinal ligament. Thus presence and absence of scar tissue were also simulated. For each loading case studied, intervertebral rotations, intradiscal pressures and contact forces in the facet joints were calculated for 1,000 randomized input parameter combinations in order to determine the probable range of these output parameters. Intervertebral rotation at implant level varies strongly for different combinations of the input parameters. It is mainly affected by gap size, ap-position and implant ball radius for flexion, by scar tissue and implant ball radius for extension and lateral bending, and by gap size and implant ball radius for axial torsion. For extension, intervertebral rotation at implant level varied between 1.4° and 7.5°. Intradiscal pressure in the adjacent discs is only slightly affected by all input

  17. Planet signatures in collisionally active debris discs: scattered light images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thebault, P.; Kral, Q.; Ertel, S.

    2012-11-01

    Context. Planet perturbations have been often invoked as a potential explanation for many spatial structures that have been imaged in debris discs. So far this issue has been mostly investigated with pure N-body numerical models, which neglect the crucial effect collisions within the disc can have on the disc's response to dynamical perturbations. Aims: We numerically investigate how the coupled effect of collisions and radiation pressure can affect the formation and survival of radial and azimutal structures in a disc perturbed by a planet. We consider two different set-ups: a planet embedded within an extended disc and a planet exterior to an inner debris ring. One important issue we want to address is under which conditions a planet's signature can be observable in a collisionally active disc. Methods: We use our DyCoSS code, which is designed to investigate the structure of perturbed debris discs at dynamical and collisional steady-state, and derive synthetic images of the system in scattered light. The planet's mass and orbit, as well as the disc's collisional activity (parameterized by its average vertical optical depth τ0) are explored as free parameters. Results: We find that collisions always significantly damp planet-induced spatial structures. For the case of an embedded planet, the planet's signature, mostly a density gap around its radial position, should remain detectable in head-on images if Mplanet ≥ MSaturn. If the system is seen edge-on, however, inferring the presence of the planet is much more difficult, as only weak asymmetries remain in a collisionally active disc, although some planet-induced signatures might be observable under very favourable conditions. For the case of an inner ring and an external planet, planetary perturbations cannot prevent collision-produced small fragments from populating the regions beyond the ring. The radial luminosity profile exterior to the ring is in most cases close to the one it should have in the absence

  18. Kineflex lumbar artificial disc versus Charité lumbar total disc replacement for the treatment of degenerative disc disease: A randomized non-inferiority trial with minimum of 2 years’ follow-up

    PubMed Central

    Pettine, Kenneth; Hersh, Andrew

    2011-01-01

    Background The Kineflex lumbar artificial disc replacement device (SpinalMotion, Mountain View, California) is a semiconstrained, posterior center of rotation, metal-on-metal intervertebral disc prosthesis. We performed a prospective, randomized, non-inferiority trial comparing the Kineflex Disc with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)–approved Charité device (DePuy Spine, Raynham, Massachusetts). Our objective was to evaluate the Kineflex Disc's safety and efficacy using validated outcomes measures—the visual analog scale (VAS) and the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI). Methods Sixty-four patients were randomized to receive either the Kineflex Disc or Charité device and were then followed up for up to 3 years. Patients completed VAS and ODI questionnaires and were evaluated clinically and radiologically for complication or device failure. Results were analyzed in terms of change in mean VAS score and ODI from baseline, as well as with a comparison of clinical success as defined by FDA investigational device exemption criteria. Non-inferiority was defined as a difference of less than 18 points in the VAS score and difference of less than 10 units on the ODI scale, in keeping with a previously established minimum clinically important difference. Results The mean improvement for the Kineflex Disc group at 24 months was 56.80 for the VAS score and 37.30 for the ODI. Similarly, the mean improvement in the Charité group was 54.43 for the VAS score and 38.40 for the ODI. At 2 years of follow-up, no difference was found in VAS scores between the two groups. The Kineflex Disc group was therefore found to be non-inferior (mean difference, 2.37; 95% confidence interval, −12.5 to 17.3; P = .004). In addition, at 24 months, 83% of patients in the Kineflex Disc group and 85% of patients in the Charité group met FDA-defined criteria for clinical success, with no difference between groups (P = .802). Conclusions This level I evidence shows the Kineflex Disc to be non

  19. Initial clinical experience with a next-generation artificial disc for the treatment of symptomatic degenerative cervical radiculopathy

    PubMed Central

    Reyes-Sanchez, Alejandro; Miramontes, Victor; Olivarez, Luis M. Rosales; Aquirre, Armando Alpizar; Quiroz, Alfredo Ortega; Zarate-Kalfopulos, Baron

    2010-01-01

    Background A feasibility trial was conducted to evaluate the initial safety and clinical use of a next-generation artificial cervical disc (M6-C artificial cervical disc; Spinal Kinetics, Sunnyvale, CA) for the treatment of patients with symptomatic degenerative cervical radiculopathy. A standardized battery of validated outcome measures was utilized to assess condition-specific functional impairment, pain severity, and quality of life. Methods Thirty-six consecutive patients were implanted with the M6-C disc and complete clinical and radiographic outcomes for 25 patients (mean age, 44.5 ± 10.1 years) with radiographically-confirmed cervical disc disease and symptomatic radiculopathy unresponsive to conservative medical management are included in this report. All patients had disc-osteophyte complex causing neural compression and were treated with discectomy and artificial cervical disc replacement at either single level (n = 12) or 2-levels (n = 13). Functional impairment was evaluated using the Neck Disability Index (NDI). Evaluation of arm and neck pain severity utilized a standard 11-point numeric scale, and health-related quality of life was evaluated with the SF-36 Health Survey. Quantitative radiographic assessments of intervertebral motion were performed using specialized motion analysis software, QMA (Quantitative Motion Analysis; Medical Metrics, Houston, TX). All outcome measures were evaluated pre-treatment and at 6 weeks, 3, 6, 12, and 24 months. Results The mean NDI score improved from 51.6 ± 11.3% pre-treatment to 27.9 ± 16.9% at 24 months, representing an approximate 46% improvement (P <.0001). The mean arm pain score improved from 6.9 ± 2.5 pre-treatment to 3.9 ± 3.1 at 24 months (43%, P =.0006). The mean neck pain score improved from 7.8 ± 2.0 pre-treatment to 3.8 ± 3.0 at 24 months (51%, P <.0001). The mean PCS score of the SF-36 improved from 34.8 ± 7.8 pre-treatment to 43.8 ± 9.3 by 24 months (26%, P =.0006). Subgroup analyses found

  20. Hybrid Strategy of Two-Level Cervical Artificial Disc and Intervertebral Cage: Biomechanical Effects on Tissues and Implants.

    PubMed

    Chung, Tzu-Tsao; Hueng, Dueng-Yuan; Lin, Shang-Chih

    2015-11-01

    This numerical study aimed to evaluate tissue and implant responses to the hybrid surgery (HS) of cervical artificial disc replacement (C-ADR) and anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF).Four hybrid strategies of two-level C-ADR and ACDF were compared in terms of adjacent segment degeneration (ASD) and implant failure.The rotary C-ADR and semirigid ACDF have been extensively used in the multilevel treatment of cervical instability and degeneration, but the constrained mobility at the ACDF segments can induce postoperative ASD problems. Hybrid surgery of C-ADR and ACDF has been an alternative to provide the optimal tradeoff between surgical cost and ASD problems. The biomechanical effects of hybrid strategies warrant thorough investigation for the two-level instrumentation.Based on computed tomography imaging, a nonlinear C2-C7 model was developed and validated by cadaveric and numerical data. Four strategies of inserting the C-ADR and ACDF into the C4-C6 segments were systematically arranged as PP (2 peek cages), AA (2 artificial discs), PA, and AP. The biomechanical behavior of these 4 strategies was evaluated in terms of motion and stresses of discs, facet forces, stresses of C-ADR and ACDF, and C-ADR motion.The constrained mobility of the ACDF segment worsened the kinematic and mechanical demands of the adjacent segments and artificial discs. The C-ADR articulation provided higher mobility than the replaced disc of the intact construct, making it an effective buffer to accommodate the compensated mobility and load from the ACDF segment. Consequently, the ASD progression of the AA construct was most restricted, followed by the PA, AP, and PP construct.The PA strategy is a tradeoff to preserve mobility and reduce cost. The C-ADR of the PA construct preserves the mobility of the C5/C6 segment and shares the transferred motion and loads of the fused C4/C5 segment. The PA construct shows optimal biomechanical results for minimizing ASD and implant failure

  1. Miconazole activity against Candida biofilms developed on acrylic discs.

    PubMed

    Gebremedhin, S; Dorocka-Bobkowska, B; Prylinski, M; Konopka, K; Duzgunes, N

    2014-08-01

    Oral candidiasis in the form of Candida-associated denture stomatitis (CaDS) is associated with Candida adhesion and biofilm formation on the fitting surface of poly (methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) dentures. Candida biofilms show considerable resistance to most conventional antifungal agents, a phenomenon that is considered a developmental-phase-specific event that may help explain the high recurrence rates associated with CaDS. The aim of this study was to examine the activity of miconazole towards in vitro-grown mature Candida biofilms formed on heat-cured PMMA discs as a standardized model. The effect of miconazole nitrate on Candida biofilms developed on acrylic discs was determined for C. albicans MYA-2732 (ATCC), C. glabrata MYA-275 (ATCC), and clinical isolates, C. albicans 6122/06, C. glabrata 7531/06, C. tropicalis 8122/06, and C. parapsilosis 11375/07. Candida biofilms were developed on heat-cured poly(methyl methacrylate) discs and treated with miconazole (0.5 - 96 μg/ml). The metabolic activity of the biofilms was measured by the XTT reduction assay. The minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) of miconazole against Candida species were determined by the microdilution method. The MICs for miconazole for the investigated strains ranged from 0.016-32 μg/ml. Treatment with miconazole resulted in a significant reduction of biofilm metabolic activity for all strains. The highest inhibition was observed at 96 μg/ml miconazole. In the case of C. glabrata MYA-275 and C. tropicalis 8122/06 this corresponded to 83.7% and 75.4% inhibition, respectively. The lowest reduction was observed for C. parapsilosis 11375/07-46.1%. For all Candida strains there was a strong correlation between MIC values and miconazole concentrations corresponding to a reduction of metabolic activity of the biofilm by 50%. Miconazole exhibits high antifungal activity against Candida biofilms developed on the surface of PMMA discs. The study provides support for the use of miconazole as an

  2. Biomechanics of Artificial Disc Replacements Adjacent to a 2-Level Fusion in 4-Level Hybrid Constructs: An In Vitro Investigation

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Zhenhua; Fogel, Guy R.; Wei, Na; Gu, Hongsheng; Liu, Weiqiang

    2015-01-01

    Background The ideal procedure for multilevel cervical degenerative disc diseases remains controversial. Recent studies on hybrid surgery combining anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) and artificial cervical disc replacement (ACDR) for 2-level and 3-level constructs have been reported in the literature. The purpose of this study was to estimate the biomechanics of 3 kinds of 4-level hybrid constructs, which are more likely to be used clinically compared to 4-level arthrodesis. Material/Methods Eighteen human cadaveric spines (C2–T1) were evaluated in different testing conditions: intact, with 3 kinds of 4-level hybrid constructs (hybrid C3–4 ACDR+C4–6 ACDF+C6–7ACDR; hybrid C3–5ACDF+C5–6ACDR+C6–7ACDR; hybrid C3–4ACDR+C4–5ACDR+C5–7ACDF); and 4-level fusion. Results Four-level fusion resulted in significant decrease in the C3–C7 ROM compared with the intact spine. The 3 different 4-level hybrid treatment groups caused only slight change at the instrumented levels compared to intact except for flexion. At the adjacent levels, 4-level fusion resulted in significant increase of contribution of both upper and lower adjacent levels. However, for the 3 hybrid constructs, significant changes of motion increase far lower than 4P at adjacent levels were only noted in partial loading conditions. No destabilizing effect or hypermobility were observed in any 4-level hybrid construct. Conclusions Four-level fusion significantly eliminated motion within the construct and increased motion at the adjacent segments. For all 3 different 4-level hybrid constructs, ACDR normalized motion of the index segment and adjacent segments with no significant hypermobility. Compared with the 4-level ACDF condition, the artificial discs in 4-level hybrid constructs had biomechanical advantages compared to fusion in normalizing adjacent level motion. PMID:26694835

  3. Artificial light and nocturnal activity in gammarids

    PubMed Central

    Hölker, Franz; Heller, Stefan; Berghahn, Rüdiger

    2014-01-01

    Artificial light is gaining attention as a potential stressor to aquatic ecosystems. Artificial lights located near streams increase light levels experienced by stream invertebrates and we hypothesized light would depress night drift rates. We also hypothesized that the effect of light on drift rates would decrease over time as the invertebrates acclimated to the new light level over the course of one month’s exposure. These hypotheses were tested by placing Gammarus spp. in eight, 75 m × 1 m artificial flumes. One flume was exposed to strong (416 lx) artificial light at night. This strong light created a gradient between 4.19 and 0.04 lx over the neighboring six artificial flumes, while a control flume was completely covered with black plastic at night. Night-time light measurements taken in the Berlin area confirm that half the flumes were at light levels experienced by urban aquatic invertebrates. Surprisingly, no light treatment affected gammarid drift rates. In contrast, physical activity measurements of in situ individually caged G. roeseli showed they increased short-term activity levels in nights of complete darkness and decreased activity levels in brightly lit flumes. Both nocturnal and diurnal drift increased, and day drift rates were unexpectadly higher than nocturnal drift. PMID:24688857

  4. Mechanically activated artificial cell by using microfluidics

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Kenneth K. Y.; Lee, Lap Man; Liu, Allen P.

    2016-01-01

    All living organisms sense mechanical forces. Engineering mechanosensitive artificial cell through bottom-up in vitro reconstitution offers a way to understand how mixtures of macromolecules assemble and organize into a complex system that responds to forces. We use stable double emulsion droplets (aqueous/oil/aqueous) to prototype mechanosensitive artificial cells. In order to demonstrate mechanosensation in artificial cells, we develop a novel microfluidic device that is capable of trapping double emulsions into designated chambers, followed by compression and aspiration in a parallel manner. The microfluidic device is fabricated using multilayer soft lithography technology, and consists of a control layer and a deformable flow channel. Deflections of the PDMS membrane above the main microfluidic flow channels and trapping chamber array are independently regulated pneumatically by two sets of integrated microfluidic valves. We successfully compress and aspirate the double emulsions, which result in transient increase and permanent decrease in oil thickness, respectively. Finally, we demonstrate the influx of calcium ions as a response of our mechanically activated artificial cell through thinning of oil. The development of a microfluidic device to mechanically activate artificial cells creates new opportunities in force-activated synthetic biology. PMID:27610921

  5. Mechanically activated artificial cell by using microfluidics.

    PubMed

    Ho, Kenneth K Y; Lee, Lap Man; Liu, Allen P

    2016-01-01

    All living organisms sense mechanical forces. Engineering mechanosensitive artificial cell through bottom-up in vitro reconstitution offers a way to understand how mixtures of macromolecules assemble and organize into a complex system that responds to forces. We use stable double emulsion droplets (aqueous/oil/aqueous) to prototype mechanosensitive artificial cells. In order to demonstrate mechanosensation in artificial cells, we develop a novel microfluidic device that is capable of trapping double emulsions into designated chambers, followed by compression and aspiration in a parallel manner. The microfluidic device is fabricated using multilayer soft lithography technology, and consists of a control layer and a deformable flow channel. Deflections of the PDMS membrane above the main microfluidic flow channels and trapping chamber array are independently regulated pneumatically by two sets of integrated microfluidic valves. We successfully compress and aspirate the double emulsions, which result in transient increase and permanent decrease in oil thickness, respectively. Finally, we demonstrate the influx of calcium ions as a response of our mechanically activated artificial cell through thinning of oil. The development of a microfluidic device to mechanically activate artificial cells creates new opportunities in force-activated synthetic biology. PMID:27610921

  6. Mechanically activated artificial cell by using microfluidics.

    PubMed

    Ho, Kenneth K Y; Lee, Lap Man; Liu, Allen P

    2016-01-01

    All living organisms sense mechanical forces. Engineering mechanosensitive artificial cell through bottom-up in vitro reconstitution offers a way to understand how mixtures of macromolecules assemble and organize into a complex system that responds to forces. We use stable double emulsion droplets (aqueous/oil/aqueous) to prototype mechanosensitive artificial cells. In order to demonstrate mechanosensation in artificial cells, we develop a novel microfluidic device that is capable of trapping double emulsions into designated chambers, followed by compression and aspiration in a parallel manner. The microfluidic device is fabricated using multilayer soft lithography technology, and consists of a control layer and a deformable flow channel. Deflections of the PDMS membrane above the main microfluidic flow channels and trapping chamber array are independently regulated pneumatically by two sets of integrated microfluidic valves. We successfully compress and aspirate the double emulsions, which result in transient increase and permanent decrease in oil thickness, respectively. Finally, we demonstrate the influx of calcium ions as a response of our mechanically activated artificial cell through thinning of oil. The development of a microfluidic device to mechanically activate artificial cells creates new opportunities in force-activated synthetic biology.

  7. Complications of Lumbar Artificial Disc Replacement Compared to Fusion: Results From the Prospective, Randomized, Multicenter US Food and Drug Administration Investigational Device Exemption Study of the Charité Artificial Disc

    PubMed Central

    Majd, Mohammed E.; Isaza, Jorge E.; Blumenthal, Scott L.; McAfee, Paul C.; Guyer, Richard D.; Hochschuler, Stephen H.; Geisler, Fred H.; Garcia, Rolando; Regan, John J.

    2007-01-01

    Background Previous reports of lumbar total disc replacement (TDR) have described significant complications. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigational device exemption (IDE) study of the Charité artificial disc represents the first level I data comparison of TDR to fusion. Methods In the prospective, randomized, multicenter IDE study, patients were randomized in a 2:1 ratio, with 205 patients in the Charité group and 99 patients in the control group (anterior lumbar interbody fusion [ALIF] with BAK cages). Inclusion criteria included confirmed single-level degenerative disc disease at L4-5 or L5-S1 and failure of nonoperative treatment for at least 6 months. Complications were reported throughout the study. Results The rate of approach-related complications was 9.8% in the investigational group and 10.1% in the control group. The rate of major neurological complications was similar between the 2 groups (investigational = 4.4%, control = 4.0%). There was a higher rate of superficial wound infection in the investigational group but no deep wound infections in either group. Pseudarthrosis occurred in 9.1% of control group patients. The rate of subsidence in the investigational group was 3.4%. The reoperation rate was 5.4% in the investigational group and 9.1% in the control group. Conclusions The incidence of perioperative and postoperative complications for lumbar TDR was similar to that of ALIF. Vigilance is necessary with respect to patient indications, training, and correct surgical technique to maintain TDR complications at the levels experienced in the IDE study. PMID:25802575

  8. Wnt Signaling Activates Shh Signaling in Early Postnatal Intervertebral Discs, and Re-Activates Shh Signaling in Old Discs in the Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Sinner, Debora; Wylie, Christopher C.; Dahia, Chitra Lekha

    2014-01-01

    Intervertebral discs (IVDs) are strong fibrocartilaginous joints that connect adjacent vertebrae of the spine. As discs age they become prone to failure, with neurological consequences that are often severe. Surgical repair of discs treats the result of the disease, which affects as many as one in seven people, rather than its cause. An ideal solution would be to repair degenerating discs using the mechanisms of their normal differentiation. However, these mechanisms are poorly understood. Using the mouse as a model, we previously showed that Shh signaling produced by nucleus pulposus cells activates the expression of differentiation markers, and cell proliferation, in the postnatal IVD. In the present study, we show that canonical Wnt signaling is required for the expression of Shh signaling targets in the IVD. We also show that Shh and canonical Wnt signaling pathways are down-regulated in adult IVDs. Furthermore, this down-regulation is reversible, since re-activation of the Wnt or Shh pathways in older discs can re-activate molecular markers of the IVD that are lost with age. These data suggest that biological treatments targeting Wnt and Shh signaling pathways may be feasible as a therapeutic for degenerative disc disease. PMID:24892825

  9. Crack orientation and depth estimation in a low-pressure turbine disc using a phased array ultrasonic transducer and an artificial neural network.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiaoxia; Chen, Shili; Jin, Shijiu; Chang, Wenshuang

    2013-01-01

    Stress corrosion cracks (SCC) in low-pressure steam turbine discs are serious hidden dangers to production safety in the power plants, and knowing the orientation and depth of the initial cracks is essential for the evaluation of the crack growth rate, propagation direction and working life of the turbine disc. In this paper, a method based on phased array ultrasonic transducer and artificial neural network (ANN), is proposed to estimate both the depth and orientation of initial cracks in the turbine discs. Echo signals from cracks with different depths and orientations were collected by a phased array ultrasonic transducer, and the feature vectors were extracted by wavelet packet, fractal technology and peak amplitude methods. The radial basis function (RBF) neural network was investigated and used in this application. The final results demonstrated that the method presented was efficient in crack estimation tasks. PMID:24064602

  10. Crack Orientation and Depth Estimation in a Low-Pressure Turbine Disc Using a Phased Array Ultrasonic Transducer and an Artificial Neural Network

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xiaoxia; Chen, Shili; Jin, Shijiu; Chang, Wenshuang

    2013-01-01

    Stress corrosion cracks (SCC) in low-pressure steam turbine discs are serious hidden dangers to production safety in the power plants, and knowing the orientation and depth of the initial cracks is essential for the evaluation of the crack growth rate, propagation direction and working life of the turbine disc. In this paper, a method based on phased array ultrasonic transducer and artificial neural network (ANN), is proposed to estimate both the depth and orientation of initial cracks in the turbine discs. Echo signals from cracks with different depths and orientations were collected by a phased array ultrasonic transducer, and the feature vectors were extracted by wavelet packet, fractal technology and peak amplitude methods. The radial basis function (RBF) neural network was investigated and used in this application. The final results demonstrated that the method presented was efficient in crack estimation tasks. PMID:24064602

  11. Crack orientation and depth estimation in a low-pressure turbine disc using a phased array ultrasonic transducer and an artificial neural network.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiaoxia; Chen, Shili; Jin, Shijiu; Chang, Wenshuang

    2013-09-13

    Stress corrosion cracks (SCC) in low-pressure steam turbine discs are serious hidden dangers to production safety in the power plants, and knowing the orientation and depth of the initial cracks is essential for the evaluation of the crack growth rate, propagation direction and working life of the turbine disc. In this paper, a method based on phased array ultrasonic transducer and artificial neural network (ANN), is proposed to estimate both the depth and orientation of initial cracks in the turbine discs. Echo signals from cracks with different depths and orientations were collected by a phased array ultrasonic transducer, and the feature vectors were extracted by wavelet packet, fractal technology and peak amplitude methods. The radial basis function (RBF) neural network was investigated and used in this application. The final results demonstrated that the method presented was efficient in crack estimation tasks.

  12. Artificial oocyte activation: evidence for clinical readiness.

    PubMed

    Ebner, T; Montag, M

    2016-03-01

    Artificial oocyte activation using Ca(2+)ionophores or similar compounds is a widely applied technique in IVF laboratories. This is all the more interesting as most of the agents aiming for intracellular Ca(2+) increase do not result in physiological Ca(2+) oscillations but much rather cause a single Ca(2+) transient. Two observations from mammals may explain why a rather non-physiological single Ca(2+) peak caused by ionophores is sufficient to rescue cycles showing severe male factor infertility, deficient oocyte maturation, developmental problems in humans, or both. On the one hand, it has been shown that it is mainly the initial Ca(2+) rise that drives further downstream events, in particular calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) action, and on the other, it is possible that this enzyme remains active even in the absence of Ca(2+). It therefore seems that mammalian oocytes can respond to a wide range of intracellular Ca(2+) signals and have a surprisingly high degree of tolerance for changes in cytosolic Ca(2+). As epigenetic consequences or differences in gene expression have not been studied to date, artificial oocyte activation has to be considered as experimental and should only be applied with a proper indication. PMID:26776820

  13. Comparison of wear behaviors for an artificial cervical disc under flexion/extension and axial rotation motions.

    PubMed

    Wang, Song; Song, Jian; Liao, Zhenhua; Feng, Pingfa; Liu, Weiqiang

    2016-06-01

    The wear behaviors of a ball-on-socket (UHMWPE-on-Ti6Al4V) artificial cervical disc were studied with 1.5 MC (million cycles) wear simulation under single flexion/extension and axial rotation motion and their composite motion. The wear rates, wear traces, and contact stress were analyzed and contrasted based on mass loss, optical microscopy and SEM as well as 3D profilometer, and ANSYS software, respectively. A much higher wear rate and more severe wear scars appeared under multi-directional motion. Flexion/extension motion of 7.5° lead to more severe wear than that under axial rotation motion of 4°. The above results were closely related to the contact compression stress and shear stress. The wear surface in FE motion showed typical linear wear scratches while revealing obvious arc-shaped wear tracks in AR motion. However, the central zone of both ball and socket components revealed more severe wear tracks than that in the edge zone under these two different motions. The dominant wear mechanism was plowing/scratching and abrasive wear as well as a little oxidation wear for the titanium socket while it was scratching damage with adhesive wear and fatigue wear due to plastic deformation under cyclic load and motion profiles for the UHMWPE ball. PMID:27040218

  14. Prenatal interaction of mutant DISC1 and immune activation produces adult psychopathology

    PubMed Central

    Abazyan, B.; Nomura, J.; Kannan, G.; Ishizuka, K.; Tamashiro, K. L. K.; Nucifora, F.; Pogorelov, V.; Ladenheim, B.; Yang, C.; Krasnova, I. N.; Cadet, J. L.; Pardo, C.; Mori, S.; Kamiya, A.; Vogel, M.; Sawa, A.; Ross, C. A.; Pletnikov, M. V.

    2010-01-01

    Background Gene-environment interactions (GEI) are involved in the pathogenesis of mental diseases. We evaluated interaction between mutant human Disrupted-In-Schizophrenia-1 (mhDISC1) and maternal immune activation implicated in schizophrenia and mood disorders. Methods Pregnant mice were treated with saline or polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid (Poly I:C) at gestation day 9. Levels of inflammatory cytokines were measured in fetal and adult brains, expression of mhDISC1, endogenous DISC1, LIS1, NDEL1, gp130, Grb2, and GSK-3β were assessed in cortical samples of newborn mice. Tissue content of monoamines, volumetric brain abnormalities, dendritic spine density in the hippocampus and various domains of the mouse behavior repertoire were evaluated in adult male mice. Results Prenatal interaction produced anxiety, depression-like responses, and altered pattern of social behavior. These behaviors were accompanied by decreased reactivity of the HPA axis, attenuated 5-HT neurotransmission in the hippocampus, reduced enlargement of lateral ventricles, decreased volumes of amygdala and periaqueductal gray matter and density of spines on dendrites of granule cells of the hippocampus. Prenatal interaction modulated secretion of inflammatory cytokines in fetal brains, levels of mhDISC1, endogenous mouse DISC1, and GSK-3β. The behavioral effects of GEI were observed only if mhDISC1 was expressed throughout the life span. Conclusions Prenatal immune activation interacted with mhDISC1 to produce the neurobehavioral phenotypes that were not seen in untreated mhDISC1 mice and that resemble aspects of major mental illnesses, including mood disorders. We propose that our DISC1 mouse model is a valuable system to study the molecular pathways underlying GEI relevant to mental illnesses. PMID:21130225

  15. Photochemical Chlorine Activation From Artificial Saline Snowpacks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wren, S. N.; Abbatt, J.; Donaldson, J.

    2012-12-01

    Halogen activation on snow and ice substrates has a profound influence on the oxidative capacity of the polar boundary layer. The release of reactive chlorine species is of particular interest since chlorine atoms can participate in both ozone depletion and organic oxidation. However, the mechanisms by which halides in sea ice substrates are converted into reactive halogen species are not well understood. In this study we investigated the photochemical activation of chlorine from artificial saline snow. Gas phase Cl2, BrCl and Br2 were detected using a chemical ionization mass spectrometer. We observe the dark release of Br2 in the presence of ozone; BrCl and Cl2 are only observed in the presence of both ozone and light. Interestingly, the release of reactive chlorine species persists when a 320 nm or a 380 nm long-pass filter is placed in the light path. Results suggest that smaller snow grains, which present a larger total snow surface area, enhance chlorine production to a greater extent than BrCl or Br2 production. Here we also present the effect of temperature (above and below the NaCl euctectic), acidity, chloride concentration, and ozone concentration on the production of Br2, BrCl and Cl2. Overall the results indicate that a mechanism involving UV-A light and ozone leads to chlorine activation, which may be particularly important in bromide-depleted snow.

  16. Organising activities of engrailed, hedgehog, wingless and decapentaplegic in the genital discs of Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Emerald, B S; Roy, J K

    1998-11-01

    The genes engrailed (en), hedgehog (hh), wingless (wg) and decapentaplegic (dpp) have been shown to play vital organising roles in the development and differentiation of thoracic imaginal discs. We have analysed the roles of these genes in organising the development and differentiation of the genital discs, which are bilaterally symmetrical and possess different primordia, namely, the male and female genital primordia and an anal primordium. Our results suggest that the organising activity of en in genital discs programs the normal development and differentiation of the genital disc by regulating the expression of hh. Hh in turn induces wg and dpp, the genes whose products act as secondary signalling molecules. Moreover, the complementary patterns of wg and dpp expression are essential for the bilateral symmetry and are maintained by mutual repression.

  17. Cost Utility Analysis of the Cervical Artificial Disc vs Fusion for the Treatment of 2-Level Symptomatic Degenerative Disc Disease: 5-Year Follow-up

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Zhuo; Nunley, Pierce; Stone, Marcus B.; Lee, Darrin; Kim, Kee D.

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The cervical total disc replacement (cTDR) was developed to treat cervical degenerative disc disease while preserving motion. OBJECTIVE: Cost-effectiveness of this intervention was established by looking at 2-year follow-up, and this update reevaluates our analysis over 5 years. METHODS: Data were derived from a randomized trial of 330 patients. Data from the 12-Item Short Form Health Survey were transformed into utilities by using the SF-6D algorithm. Costs were calculated by extracting diagnosis-related group codes and then applying 2014 Medicare reimbursement rates. A Markov model evaluated quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) for both treatment groups. Univariate and multivariate sensitivity analyses were conducted to test the stability of the model. The model adopted both societal and health system perspectives and applied a 3% annual discount rate. RESULTS: The cTDR costs $1687 more than anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) over 5 years. In contrast, cTDR had $34 377 less productivity loss compared with ACDF. There was a significant difference in the return-to-work rate (81.6% compared with 65.4% for cTDR and ACDF, respectively; P = .029). From a societal perspective, the incremental cost-effective ratio (ICER) for cTDR was −$165 103 per QALY. From a health system perspective, the ICER for cTDR was $8518 per QALY. In the sensitivity analysis, the ICER for cTDR remained below the US willingness-to-pay threshold of $50 000 per QALY in all scenarios (−$225 816 per QALY to $22 071 per QALY). CONCLUSION: This study is the first to report the comparative cost-effectiveness of cTDR vs ACDF for 2-level degenerative disc disease at 5 years. The authors conclude that, because of the negative ICER, cTDR is the dominant modality. ABBREVIATIONS: ACDF, anterior cervical discectomy and fusion AWP, average wholesale price CE, cost-effectiveness CEA, cost-effectiveness analysis CPT, Current Procedural Terminology cTDR, cervical total disc

  18. Photochemical chlorine activation from artificial saline snowpacks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wren, Sumi; Donaldson, James; Abbatt, Jon

    2013-04-01

    Halogen activation on snow and ice substrates has a profound influence on the oxidative capacity of the polar boundary layer. The release of reactive chlorine species is of particular interest since chlorine atoms can participate in both ozone depletion and hydrocarbon oxidation. However, the mechanisms by which halides in sea ice substrates are converted into reactive halogen species are not well understood. In this study we investigated the activation of halogens from artificial saline snow in the presence of light and ozone. Gas phase Cl2, BrCl and Br2 were detected using a chemical ionization mass spectrometer. We observe the dark release of Br2 in the presence of ozone; BrCl and Cl2 are only observed in the presence of both ozone and light. Interestingly, photo-induced release of halogens is still seen when a 320 nm or a 380 nm long-pass filter is placed in the light path. The observed halogen release is consistent with the chemistry occurring in a concentrated brine located at the surface of the snow grains. Results suggest that smaller snow grains, which present a larger total snow surface area, enhance chlorine production to a greater extent than BrCl or Br2 production. Chlorine production is shown to be strongly pH dependent, with higher chlorine yields under acidic conditions. Overall the results indicate that a mechanism involving UV-A light and ozone leads to accelerated halogen activation, which may be particularly important for releasing chlorine from bromide-depleted snow.

  19. Construction of a tissue engineered intervertebral disc with high biological activity using an allogeneic intervertebral disc supplemented with transfected nucleus pulposus cells expressing exogenous dopamine beta-hydroxylase.

    PubMed

    Bai, M; Wang, Y H; Yin, H P; Li, S W

    2015-09-09

    This study addressed the in vitro construction and biological activity of tissue engineered intervertebral discs with exogenous human dopamine beta-hydroxylase (DBH) nucleus pulposus cells. pSNAV2.0-DBH expression plasmids were utilized to enhance the survival rates of intervertebral disc tissue cells. Various concentrations of transfected nucleus pulposus cells were injected into the discs, and DBH mRNA expression was determined using polymerase chain reaction amplification. Polysaccharide content and total collagen protein content in the engineered disc nucleus pulposus tissue were determined. The visible fluorescence intensities of the 1 x 10(5) and 1 x 10(6) groups vs the 1 x 10(4) group were significantly increased (P < 0.05); no significant difference was observed between the 1 x 10(5) and 1 x 10(6) groups (P > 0.05) at 7 days after injection. DBH mRNA expression could be detected in the all but the EGFP control group at 14 days culture. No significant difference was observed in the protein content between the 1 x 10(4) and the control groups at various times, while the protein content was significantly higher in the 1 x 10(5) vs the control and the 1 x 10(4) groups at 7-, 14-, and 21-day cultures. These results demonstrate that a tissue engineered intervertebral disc with high biological activity can be constructed by utilizing allogeneic intervertebral discs stored in liquid nitrogen and a 1 x 10(5) transfected nucleus pulposus cell complex with in vitro culture for 14 days. This model can be used in animal experiments to study the biological activity of the engineered discs.

  20. Construction of a tissue engineered intervertebral disc with high biological activity using an allogeneic intervertebral disc supplemented with transfected nucleus pulposus cells expressing exogenous dopamine beta-hydroxylase.

    PubMed

    Bai, M; Wang, Y H; Yin, H P; Li, S W

    2015-01-01

    This study addressed the in vitro construction and biological activity of tissue engineered intervertebral discs with exogenous human dopamine beta-hydroxylase (DBH) nucleus pulposus cells. pSNAV2.0-DBH expression plasmids were utilized to enhance the survival rates of intervertebral disc tissue cells. Various concentrations of transfected nucleus pulposus cells were injected into the discs, and DBH mRNA expression was determined using polymerase chain reaction amplification. Polysaccharide content and total collagen protein content in the engineered disc nucleus pulposus tissue were determined. The visible fluorescence intensities of the 1 x 10(5) and 1 x 10(6) groups vs the 1 x 10(4) group were significantly increased (P < 0.05); no significant difference was observed between the 1 x 10(5) and 1 x 10(6) groups (P > 0.05) at 7 days after injection. DBH mRNA expression could be detected in the all but the EGFP control group at 14 days culture. No significant difference was observed in the protein content between the 1 x 10(4) and the control groups at various times, while the protein content was significantly higher in the 1 x 10(5) vs the control and the 1 x 10(4) groups at 7-, 14-, and 21-day cultures. These results demonstrate that a tissue engineered intervertebral disc with high biological activity can be constructed by utilizing allogeneic intervertebral discs stored in liquid nitrogen and a 1 x 10(5) transfected nucleus pulposus cell complex with in vitro culture for 14 days. This model can be used in animal experiments to study the biological activity of the engineered discs. PMID:26400296

  1. Artificial Syntactic Violations Activate Broca's Region

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Petersson, Karl Magnus; Forkstam, Christian; Ingvar, Martin

    2004-01-01

    In the present study, using event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging, we investigated a group of participants on a grammaticality classification task after they had been exposed to well-formed consonant strings generated from an artificial regular grammar. We used an implicit acquisition paradigm in which the participants were exposed…

  2. Intrinsic disc emission and the soft X-ray excess in active galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Done, Chris; Davis, S. W.; Jin, C.; Blaes, O.; Ward, M.

    2012-03-01

    Narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) galaxies have low-mass black holes and mass accretion rates close to (or exceeding) Eddington, so a standard blackbody accretion disc should peak in the extreme ultraviolet. However, the lack of true absorption opacity in the disc means that the emission is better approximated by a colour temperature corrected blackbody, and this colour temperature correction is large enough (˜2.4) that the bare disc emission from a zero spin black hole can extend into the soft X-ray bandpass. Part of the soft X-ray excess seen in these objects must be intrinsic emission from the disc unless the vertical structure is very different to that predicted. None the less, this is not the whole story even for the extreme NLS1 as the shape of the soft excess is much broader than predicted by a bare disc spectrum, indicating some Compton upscattering by warm, optically thick material. We associate this with the disc itself, so it must ultimately be powered by mass accretion. We build an energetically self-consistent model assuming that the emission thermalizes to a (colour temperature corrected) blackbody only at large radii. At smaller radii the gravitational energy is split between powering optically thick Comptonized disc emission (forming the soft X-ray excess) and an optically thin corona above the disc (forming the tail to higher energies). We show examples of this model fit to the extreme NLS1 RE J1034+396, and to the much lower Eddington fraction broad-line Seyfert 1 PG 1048+231. We use these to guide our fits and interpretations of three template spectra made from co-adding multiple sources to track out a sequence of active galactic nucleus (AGN) spectra as a function of L/LEdd. Both the individual objects and template spectra show the surprising result that the Compton upscattered soft X-ray excess decreases in importance with increasing L/LEdd. The strongest soft excesses are associated with low mass accretion rate AGN rather than being tied to some

  3. Textured bearing surface in artificial joints to reduce macrophage activation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakanishi, Yoshitaka; Nishi, Naoki; Chikaura, Hiroto; Nakashima, Yuta; Miura, Hiromasa; Higaki, Hidehiko; Mizuta, Hiroshi; Iwamoto, Yukihide; Fujiwara, Yukio; Komohara, Yoshihiro; Takeya, Motohiro

    2015-12-01

    Micro slurry-jet erosion has been proposed as a precision machining technique for the bearing surfaces of artificial joints in order to reduce the total amount of polyethylene wear and to enlarge the size of the wear debris. The micro slurry-jet erosion method is a wet blasting technique which uses alumina particles as the abrasive medium along with compressed air and water to create an ideal surface. Pin-on-disc wear tests with multidirectional sliding motion on the textured surface of a \\text{Co}-\\text{Cr}-\\text{Mo} alloy counterface for polyethylene resulted in both a reduction of wear as well as enlargement of the polyethylene debris size. In this study, primary human peripheral blood mononuclear phagocytes were incubated with the debris, and it was elucidated that the wear debris generated on the textured surface regulated secretion of the proinflammatory cytokines IL-6 and TNF-α, indicating a reduction in the induced tissue reaction and joint loosening.

  4. Wear studies on ZrO2-filled PEEK as coating bearing materials for artificial cervical discs of Ti6Al4V.

    PubMed

    Song, Jian; Liu, Yuhong; Liao, Zhenhua; Wang, Song; Tyagi, Rajnesh; Liu, Weiqiang

    2016-12-01

    Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) and its composite coatings are believed to be the potential candidates' bio-implant materials. However, these coatings have not yet been used on the surface of titanium-based orthopedics and joint products and very few investigations on the tribological characteristics could be found in the published literature till date. In this study, the wettabilities, composition and micro-hardness were characterized using contact angle measurement, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and hardness tester. The tribological tests were conducted using a ball-on-disc contact pair under 25% newborn calf serum (NCS) lubricated condition. For comparison, bare Ti6Al4V was studied. The obtained results revealed that those PEEK/ZrO2 composite coatings could improve the tribological properties of Ti6Al4V significantly. Adhesive wear and mild abrasive wear might be the dominant wear and failure mechanisms for PEEK/ZrO2 composite coatings in NCS lubricated condition. After comprehensive evaluation in the present study, 5wt.% ZrO2 nanoparticles filled PEEK coating displayed the optimum tribological characteristics and could be taken as a potential candidate for the bearing material of artificial cervical disc.

  5. Wear studies on ZrO2-filled PEEK as coating bearing materials for artificial cervical discs of Ti6Al4V.

    PubMed

    Song, Jian; Liu, Yuhong; Liao, Zhenhua; Wang, Song; Tyagi, Rajnesh; Liu, Weiqiang

    2016-12-01

    Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) and its composite coatings are believed to be the potential candidates' bio-implant materials. However, these coatings have not yet been used on the surface of titanium-based orthopedics and joint products and very few investigations on the tribological characteristics could be found in the published literature till date. In this study, the wettabilities, composition and micro-hardness were characterized using contact angle measurement, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and hardness tester. The tribological tests were conducted using a ball-on-disc contact pair under 25% newborn calf serum (NCS) lubricated condition. For comparison, bare Ti6Al4V was studied. The obtained results revealed that those PEEK/ZrO2 composite coatings could improve the tribological properties of Ti6Al4V significantly. Adhesive wear and mild abrasive wear might be the dominant wear and failure mechanisms for PEEK/ZrO2 composite coatings in NCS lubricated condition. After comprehensive evaluation in the present study, 5wt.% ZrO2 nanoparticles filled PEEK coating displayed the optimum tribological characteristics and could be taken as a potential candidate for the bearing material of artificial cervical disc. PMID:27612794

  6. Dynamics of Astrophysical Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sellwood, J. A.

    2004-01-01

    Preface; Names and addresses of participants; Conference photograph; 1. Spiral waves in Saturn's rings; 2. Structure of the Uranian rings; 3. Planetary rings: theory; 4. Simulations of light scattering in planetary rings; 5. Accretion discs around young stellar objects and the proto-Sun; 6. The ß Pictoris disc: a planetary rather than a protoplanetary one; 7. Optical polarimetry and thermal imaging of the disc axound ß Pictoris; 8. Observations of discs around protostars and young stars; 9. VLA observations of ammonia towaxd moleculax outflow sources; 10. Derivation of the physical properties of molecular discs by an MEM method; 11. Masers associated with discs around young stars; 12. The nature of polarisation discs axound young stars; 13. The correlation between the main parameters of the interstellar gas (including Salpeter's spectrum of masses) as a result of the development of turbulent Rossby waves; 14. Discs in cataclysmic variables and X-ray binaries; 15. A disc instability model for soft X-ray transients containing black holes; 16. X-ray variability from the accretion disc of NGC 5548; 17. Viscously heated coronae and winds around accretion discs; 18. Optical emission line profiles of symbiotic stars; 19. The effect of formation of Fell in winds confined to discs for luminous stars; 20. Observational evidence for accretion discs in active galactic nuclei; 21. The fuelling of active galactic nuclei by non-axisynlinetric instabilities; 22. The circum-nuclear disc in the Galactic centre; 23. Non-axisymmetric instabilities in thin self-gravitating differentially rotating gaseous discs; 24. Non-linear evolution of non-axisymmetric perturbations in thin self-gravitating gaseous discs; 25. Eccentric gravitational instabilities in nearly Keplerian discs; 26. Gravity mode instabilities in accretion tori; 27. The stability of viscous supersonic shear flows - critical Reynolds numbers and their implications for accretion discs; 28. Asymptotic analysis of overstable

  7. Artificial Swimmers Propelled by Acoustically Activated Flagella.

    PubMed

    Ahmed, Daniel; Baasch, Thierry; Jang, Bumjin; Pane, Salvador; Dual, Jürg; Nelson, Bradley J

    2016-08-10

    Recent studies have garnered considerable interest in the field of propulsion to maneuver micro- and nanosized objects. Acoustics provide an alternate and attractive method to generate propulsion. To date, most acoustic-based swimmers do not use structural resonances, and their motion is determined by a combination of bulk acoustic streaming and a standing-wave field. The resultant field is intrinsically dependent on the boundaries of their resonating chambers. Though acoustic based propulsion is appealing in biological contexts, existing swimmers are less efficient, especially when operating in vivo, since no predictable standing-wave can be established in a human body. Here we describe a new class of nanoswimmer propelled by the small-amplitude oscillation of a flagellum-like flexible tail in standing and, more importantly, in traveling acoustic waves. The artificial nanoswimmer, fabricated by multistep electrodeposition techniques, compromises a rigid bimetallic head and a flexible tail. During acoustic excitation of the nanoswimmer the tail structure oscillates, which leads to a large amplitude propulsion in traveling waves. FEM simulation results show that the structural resonances lead to high propulsive forces. PMID:27459382

  8. [Spine disc MR image analysis using improved independent component analysis based active appearance model and Markov random field].

    PubMed

    Hao, Shijie; Zhan, Shu; Jiang, Jianguo; Li, Hong; Ian, Rosse

    2010-02-01

    As there are not many research reports on segmentation and quantitative analysis of soft tissues in lumbar medical images, this paper presents an algorithm for segmenting and quantitatively analyzing discs in lumbar Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Vertebrae are first segmented using improved Independent component analysis based active appearance model (ICA-AAM), and lumbar curve is obtained with Minimum Description Length (MDL); based on these results, fast and unsupervised Markov Random Field (MRF) disc segmentation combining disc imaging features and intensity profile is further achieved; finally, disc herniation is quantitatively evaluated. The experiment proves that the proposed algorithm is fast and effective, thus providing doctors with aid in diagnosing and curing lumbar disc herniation.

  9. Antiurolithiatic activity of Abelmoschus moschatus seed extracts against zinc disc implantation-induced urolithiasis in rats

    PubMed Central

    Pawar, Anil T.; Vyawahare, Niraj S.

    2016-01-01

    Background: The commonly used techniques for removing renal calculi are associated with the risk of acute renal injury and increase in stone recurrence which indicates an urgent need for alternate therapy. Objectives: The aim was to evaluate the antiurolithiatic activity of Abelmoschus moschatus seed extracts in rats. Materials and Methods: Urolithiasis was induced by surgical implantations of zinc disc in the urinary bladders of rats. Upon postsurgical recovery, different doses of chloroform (CAM) and methanolic (MAM) extracts of A. moschatus seeds (viz., 100, 200 and 400 mg/kg body weight) were administered to disc implanted rats for the period of 7 days by the oral route. Antiurolithiatic activity was evaluated by measuring various dimensions of stones and estimating levels of various biomarkers in serum and urine samples. Results: A significant decrease in urinary output was observed in disc implanted animals, which was prevented by the treatment with extracts. Supplementation with extracts caused significant improvement in glomerular filtration rate and urinary total protein excretion. The elevated levels of serum creatinine, uric acid, and blood urea nitrogen were also prevented by the extracts. The extracts significantly reduced deposition of calculi deposition around the implanted disc. This antiurolithiatic potential is observed at all doses (100, 200, and 400 mg/kg) of MAM, whereas only higher dose (400 mg/kg) of CAM showed significant antiurolithiatic potential. Conclusion: The extracts of A. moschatus seeds possessed significant antiurolithiatic activity. The possible mechanism underlying this effect is mediated collectively through diuretic, antioxidant, and free-radical scavenging effects of the plant. PMID:27057124

  10. Contractile activity is required for Z-disc sarcomere maturation in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Geach, Timothy J; Hirst, Elizabeth MA; Zimmerman, Lyle B

    2015-01-01

    Sarcomere structure underpins structural integrity, signaling, and force transmission in the muscle. In embryos of the frog Xenopus tropicalis, muscle contraction begins even while sarcomerogenesis is ongoing. To determine whether contractile activity plays a role in sarcomere formation in vivo, chemical tools were used to block acto-myosin contraction in embryos of the frog X. tropicalis, and Z-disc assembly was characterized in the paralyzed dicky ticker mutant. Confocal and ultrastructure analysis of paralyzed embryos showed delayed Z-disc formation and defects in thick filament organization. These results suggest a previously undescribed role for contractility in sarcomere maturation in vivo. genesis 53:299–307, 2015. © 2015 The Authors. Genesis Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:25845369

  11. A Bayesian framework for active artificial perception.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, João Filipe; Lobo, Jorge; Bessière, Pierre; Castelo-Branco, Miguel; Dias, Jorge

    2013-04-01

    In this paper, we present a Bayesian framework for the active multimodal perception of 3-D structure and motion. The design of this framework finds its inspiration in the role of the dorsal perceptual pathway of the human brain. Its composing models build upon a common egocentric spatial configuration that is naturally fitting for the integration of readings from multiple sensors using a Bayesian approach. In the process, we will contribute with efficient and robust probabilistic solutions for cyclopean geometry-based stereovision and auditory perception based only on binaural cues, modeled using a consistent formalization that allows their hierarchical use as building blocks for the multimodal sensor fusion framework. We will explicitly or implicitly address the most important challenges of sensor fusion using this framework, for vision, audition, and vestibular sensing. Moreover, interaction and navigation require maximal awareness of spatial surroundings, which, in turn, is obtained through active attentional and behavioral exploration of the environment. The computational models described in this paper will support the construction of a simultaneously flexible and powerful robotic implementation of multimodal active perception to be used in real-world applications, such as human-machine interaction or mobile robot navigation.

  12. A Bayesian framework for active artificial perception.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, João Filipe; Lobo, Jorge; Bessière, Pierre; Castelo-Branco, Miguel; Dias, Jorge

    2013-04-01

    In this paper, we present a Bayesian framework for the active multimodal perception of 3-D structure and motion. The design of this framework finds its inspiration in the role of the dorsal perceptual pathway of the human brain. Its composing models build upon a common egocentric spatial configuration that is naturally fitting for the integration of readings from multiple sensors using a Bayesian approach. In the process, we will contribute with efficient and robust probabilistic solutions for cyclopean geometry-based stereovision and auditory perception based only on binaural cues, modeled using a consistent formalization that allows their hierarchical use as building blocks for the multimodal sensor fusion framework. We will explicitly or implicitly address the most important challenges of sensor fusion using this framework, for vision, audition, and vestibular sensing. Moreover, interaction and navigation require maximal awareness of spatial surroundings, which, in turn, is obtained through active attentional and behavioral exploration of the environment. The computational models described in this paper will support the construction of a simultaneously flexible and powerful robotic implementation of multimodal active perception to be used in real-world applications, such as human-machine interaction or mobile robot navigation. PMID:23014760

  13. Are passive red spirals truly passive?. The current star formation activity of optically red disc galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cortese, L.

    2012-07-01

    We used GALEX ultraviolet and WISE 22 μm observations to investigate the current star formation activity of the optically red spirals recently identified as part of the Galaxy Zoo project. These galaxies were accurately selected from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey as pure discs with low or no current star formation activity, representing one of the best optically selected samples of candidate passive spirals. However, we show that these galaxies are not only still forming stars at a significant rate (≳1 M⊙ yr-1) but, more importantly, their star formation activity is not different from that of normal star-forming discs of the same stellar mass (M∗ ≳ 1010.2 M⊙). Indeed, these systems lie on the UV-optical blue sequence, even without any corrections for internal dust attenuation, and they follow the same specific star formation rate vs. stellar mass relation of star-forming galaxies. Our findings clearly show that at high stellar masses, optical colours do not allow to distinguish between actively star-forming and truly quiescent systems.

  14. Catalytically active nanomaterials: a promising candidate for artificial enzymes.

    PubMed

    Lin, Youhui; Ren, Jinsong; Qu, Xiaogang

    2014-04-15

    Natural enzymes, exquisite biocatalysts mediating every biological process in living organisms, are able to accelerate the rate of chemical reactions up to 10(19) times for specific substrates and reactions. However, the practical application of enzymes is often hampered by their intrinsic drawbacks, such as low operational stability, sensitivity of catalytic activity to environmental conditions, and high costs in preparation and purification. Therefore, the discovery and development of artificial enzymes is highly desired. Recently, the merging of nanotechnology with biology has ignited extensive research efforts for designing functional nanomaterials that exhibit various properties intrinsic to enzymes. As a promising candidate for artificial enzymes, catalytically active nanomaterials (nanozymes) show several advantages over natural enzymes, such as controlled synthesis in low cost, tunability in catalytic activities, as well as high stability against stringent conditions. In this Account, we focus on our recent progress in exploring and constructing such nanoparticulate artificial enzymes, including graphene oxide, graphene-hemin nanocomposites, carbon nanotubes, carbon nanodots, mesoporous silica-encapsulated gold nanoparticles, gold nanoclusters, and nanoceria. According to their structural characteristics, these enzyme mimics are categorized into three classes: carbon-, metal-, and metal-oxide-based nanomaterials. We aim to highlight the important role of catalytic nanomaterials in the fields of biomimetics. First, we provide a practical introduction to the identification of these nanozymes, the source of the enzyme-like activities, and the enhancement of activities via rational design and engineering. Then we briefly describe new or enhanced applications of certain nanozymes in biomedical diagnosis, environmental monitoring, and therapeutics. For instance, we have successfully used these biomimetic catalysts as colorimetric probes for the detection of

  15. Oestrogen and parathyroid hormone alleviate lumbar intervertebral disc degeneration in ovariectomized rats and enhance Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Haobo; Ma, Jianxiong; Lv, Jianwei; Ma, Xinlong; Xu, Weiguo; Yang, Yang; Tian, Aixian; Wang, Ying; Sun, Lei; Xu, Liyan; Fu, Lin; Zhao, Jie

    2016-01-01

    To investigate the mitigation effect and mechanism of oestrogen and PTH on disc degeneration in rats after ovariectomy, as well as on Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity, thirty 3-month-old rats were ovariectomized and divided into three groups. Ten additional rats were used as controls. Eight weeks later, the rats were administered oestrogen or PTH for 12 weeks, and then discs were collected for tests. Results showed that nucleus pulposus cells in the Sham group were mostly notochord cells, while in the OVX group, cells gradually developed into chondrocyte-like cells. Oestrogen or PTH could partly recover the notochord cell number. After ovariectomy, the endplate roughened and endplate porosity decreased. After oestrogen or PTH treatment, the smoothness and porosity of endplate recovered. Compared with the Sham group, Aggrecan, Col2a and Wnt/β-catenin pathway expression in OVX group decreased, and either oestrogen or PTH treatment improved their expression. The biomechanical properties of intervertebral disc significantly changed after ovariectomy, and oestrogen or PTH treatment partly recovered them. Disc degeneration occurred with low oestrogen, and the underlying mechanisms involve nutrition supply disorders, cell type changes and decreased Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity. Oestrogen and PTH can retard disc degeneration in OVX rats and enhance Wnt/β-catenin pathway activity in nucleus pulposus. PMID:27279629

  16. Asset Inequality and Economic Activity in Artificial Societies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kikuchi, Toshiko

    In this paper, using multi-agent simulations, the effect asset inequality has on an artificial society is analyzed. It is shown that it is possible for a sustainable society to decrease in asset inequality and at the same time increase economic activity. In sustainable societies, the asset inequality increases as the consumption tax rate is raised, and in artificial societies where the tax rate is the same, inequality increases in the society in which agents with even small a surplus undertake unselfish actions. In sustainable societies which employ both income and consumption tax, an increase in asset inequalities leads to an increase economic activity. But, in sustainable societies which levy only the income tax, this result does not necessarily hold. These results show that if economic activity is increased in sustainable societies where the consumption tax rate is raised for the fiscal stability, an inequality expansion is an acceptable consequence. However, the sustainable society with the highest economic activity is realized when only the income tax is levied. In sustainable societies which levy only the income tax, it is possible to decrease inequality while simultaneously increasing economic activity.

  17. Chemotaxis of artificial microswimmers in active density waves.

    PubMed

    Geiseler, Alexander; Hänggi, Peter; Marchesoni, Fabio; Mulhern, Colm; Savel'ev, Sergey

    2016-07-01

    Living microorganisms are capable of a tactic response to external stimuli by swimming toward or away from the stimulus source; they do so by adapting their tactic signal transduction pathways to the environment. Their self-motility thus allows them to swim against a traveling tactic wave, whereas a simple fore-rear asymmetry argument would suggest the opposite. Their biomimetic counterpart, the artificial microswimmers, also propel themselves by harvesting kinetic energy from an active medium, but, in contrast, lack the adaptive capacity. Here we investigate the transport of artificial swimmers subject to traveling active waves and show, by means of analytical and numerical methods, that self-propelled particles can actually diffuse in either direction with respect to the wave, depending on its speed and waveform. Moreover, chiral swimmers, which move along spiraling trajectories, may diffuse preferably in a direction perpendicular to the active wave. Such a variety of tactic responses is explained by the modulation of the swimmer's diffusion inside traveling active pulses. PMID:27575185

  18. Chemotaxis of artificial microswimmers in active density waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geiseler, Alexander; Hänggi, Peter; Marchesoni, Fabio; Mulhern, Colm; Savel'ev, Sergey

    2016-07-01

    Living microorganisms are capable of a tactic response to external stimuli by swimming toward or away from the stimulus source; they do so by adapting their tactic signal transduction pathways to the environment. Their self-motility thus allows them to swim against a traveling tactic wave, whereas a simple fore-rear asymmetry argument would suggest the opposite. Their biomimetic counterpart, the artificial microswimmers, also propel themselves by harvesting kinetic energy from an active medium, but, in contrast, lack the adaptive capacity. Here we investigate the transport of artificial swimmers subject to traveling active waves and show, by means of analytical and numerical methods, that self-propelled particles can actually diffuse in either direction with respect to the wave, depending on its speed and waveform. Moreover, chiral swimmers, which move along spiraling trajectories, may diffuse preferably in a direction perpendicular to the active wave. Such a variety of tactic responses is explained by the modulation of the swimmer's diffusion inside traveling active pulses.

  19. Screening of Hyaluronic Acid-Poly(ethylene glycol) Composite Hydrogels to Support Intervertebral Disc Cell Biosynthesis using Artificial Neural Network Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Jeong, Claire G.; Francisco, Aubrey T.; Niu, Zhenbin; Mancino, Robert L; Craig, Stephen L.; Setton, Lori A.

    2014-01-01

    Hyaluronic acid (HA) poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) composite hydrogels have been widely studied for both cell delivery and soft tissue regeneration applications. A very broad range of physical and biological properties have been engineered into HA-PEG hydrogels that may differentially affect cellular “outcomes” of survival, synthesis and metabolism. The objective of this study was to rapidly screen multiple HA-PEG composite hydrogel formulations for an effect on matrix synthesis and behaviors of nucleus pulposus (NP) and anulus fibrosus (AF) cells of the intervertebral disc (IVD). A secondary objective was to apply artificial neural network (ANN) analysis to identify relationships between HA-PEG composite hydrogel formulation parameters and biological outcome measures for each cell type of the IVD. Eight different hydrogels were developed from preparations of thiolated HA (HA-SH) and PEG vinylsulfone (PEG-VS) macromers, and used as substrates for NP and AF cell culture in vitro. Hydrogel mechanical properties ranged from 70-489 kPa depending on HA molecular weight, and measures of matrix synthesis, metabolite consumption and production, and cell morphology were obtained to study relationships to hydrogel parameters. Results showed that NP and AF cell numbers were highest upon the HA-PEG hydrogels formed from the lower molecular weight HA, with evidence of higher sGAG production also upon lower HA molecular weight composite gels. All cells formed more multi-cell clusters upon any HA-PEG composite hydrogel as compared to gelatin substrates. Formulations were clustered into neurons based largely on their HA molecular weight, with few effects of PEG molecular weight observed on any measured parameters. PMID:24859415

  20. Differential activation by cytokines of mitogen-activated protein kinases in bovine temporomandibular-joint disc cells.

    PubMed

    Landesberg, R; Takeuchi, E; Puzas, J E

    1999-01-01

    Temporomandibular disorders affect a significant proportion of the population. While their aetiology is not well defined, recent histological studies suggest that the majority are similar to the osteoarthritis seen in other joints. Inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin-1 and tumour necrosis factor-alpha appear to be important in the cascade of events leading to joint destruction in osteoarthritis. Here, cells from the disc of bovine temporomandibular joint were used to examine the response to various cytokines in vitro. Disc cells were stimulated with interleukin-1alpha, tumour necrosis factor-alpha, transforming growth factor-beta, platelet-derived growth factor, and basic fibroblast growth factor. Their effects were monitored by assessing the phosphorylation of selected signal-transduction intermediates using western blot. Mitogen-activated protein kinases (Erk 1, Erk 2) were rapidly phosphorylated by exposure to basic fibroblast growth factor, platelet-derived growth factor, and tumour necrosis factor-alpha, while interleukin-1alpha showed a weak response. Transforming growth factor-beta failed to activate these kinases. Examination of the effect of these cytokines on p38 (an intermediate in the stress-activated protein-kinase pathway) showed an increase in phosphorylated p38 when stimulated with tumour necrosis factor-alpha and interleukin-1alpha. The amounts of phosphorylated signal transducer and activator of transcription-3 did not significantly increase when the cells were exposed to any of the cytokines. PMID:10075149

  1. Discovery of 15 Myr Old pre-Main Sequence Stars with Active Accretion and Sizeable Discs in NGC 6611

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Marchi, Guido; Panagia, N.; Guarcello, M. G.; Bonito, R.

    2012-01-01

    Attention is given to a population of 110 stars with prominent near-infrared (NIR) excess in the NGC 6611 cluster of the Eagle Nebula that have optical colours typical of pre-main sequence (PMS) stars older than 10 Myr. In principle, their V-I colours would be consistent with those of young PMS objects (< 1 Myr), whose radiation is heavily obscured by a circumstellar disc seen at high inclination and in small part scattered towards the observer by the back side of the disc. However, using theoretical models it is shown here that objects of this type can only account for a few percent of this population. In fact, the spatial distribution of these objects, their X-ray luminosities, their optical brightness and their positions in the colour-magnitude diagram unambiguously indicate that most of these stars are intrinsically older than 10 Myr. Ages range from 8 to 30 Myr with a median value of 15 Myr. This is the largest homogeneous sample to date of Galactic PMS stars considerably older than 10 Myr that are still actively accreting from a circumstellar disc and it allows us to set a lower limit of 5% to the disc frequency at 15 Myr in NGC 6611. These values imply a characteristic exponential lifetime of 5 Myr for disc dissipation.

  2. Proteinase-treated photoreceptor discs. Photoelectric activity of the partially-digested rhodopsin and membrane orientation.

    PubMed

    Bayramashvili, D I; Drachev, A L; Drachev, L A; Kaulen, A D; Kudelin, A B; Martynov, V I; Skulachev, V P

    1984-08-01

    Photoreceptor discs from rod outer segments of cattle retina were treated with (a) papain, (b) thermolysin or (c) trypsin, the procedures resulting in the cleavage of the rhodopsin polypeptide chain between (a) 323 and 324, 236 and 237, 241 and 242, (b) 327 and 328, 240 and 241, or (c) 339 and 340 amino acid residues, respectively. In all the cases, partially digested rhodopsins proved to be competent in generating photoelectric potential and increasing membrane conductance of the discs adsorbed onto phospholipid-impregnated collodion film. The kinetics of generation and dissipation of photopotential as well as of formation of metarhodopsin II and of the light-induced rhodopsin protonation were found to be the same in the partially digested preparations and in the intact one. Incubation of papain-treated or thermolysin-treated discs at pH 6.0 induced formation of inside-out vesicles which, when incorporated into the collodion film, generated an oppositely directed photopotential. Treatment of such vesicles with papain gave rise to further cleavages of the polypeptide localized between 30 and 31, 186 and 187 amino acid residues. One more proteinase-sensitive site, localized between 104 and 105 residues, has been discovered in the inside-out vesicles treated with thermolysin. This fact consistent with the scheme of the 'seven column' arrangement of the visual rhodopsin [Ovchinnikov, Yu. A. (1982) FEBS Lett. 148, 179-191]. Rhodopsin, when treated with papain on both sides, was deprived of sixty amino acid residues being split in two sites in the middle part of the polypeptide, but was still active as a photoelectric energy transducer. The main specific feature inherent in the photoelectric response of the papain-treated or thermolysin-treated rhodopsin and absent from the native protein is that the former survives addition of long trains of saturating flashes when the response of the intact preparation becomes negligible. This effect was shown to be due to conversion

  3. Accretion disc dynamo activity in local simulations spanning weak-to-strong net vertical magnetic flux regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvesen, Greg; Simon, Jacob B.; Armitage, Philip J.; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    2016-03-01

    Strongly magnetized accretion discs around black holes have attractive features that may explain enigmatic aspects of X-ray binary behaviour. The structure and evolution of these discs are governed by a dynamo-like mechanism, which channels part of the accretion power liberated by the magnetorotational instability (MRI) into an ordered toroidal magnetic field. To study dynamo activity, we performed three-dimensional, stratified, isothermal, ideal magnetohydrodynamic shearing box simulations. The strength of the self-sustained toroidal magnetic field depends on the net vertical magnetic flux, which we vary across almost the entire range over which the MRI is linearly unstable. We quantify disc structure and dynamo properties as a function of the initial ratio of mid-plane gas pressure to vertical magnetic field pressure, β _0^mid = p_gas / p_B. For 10^5 ≥ β _0^mid ≥ 10 the effective α-viscosity parameter scales as a power law. Dynamo activity persists up to and including β _0^mid = 10^2, at which point the entire vertical column of the disc is magnetic pressure dominated. Still stronger fields result in a highly inhomogeneous disc structure, with large density fluctuations. We show that the turbulent steady state βmid in our simulations is well matched by the analytic model of Begelman et al. describing the creation and buoyant escape of toroidal field, while the vertical structure of the disc can be broadly reproduced using this model. Finally, we discuss the implications of our results for observed properties of X-ray binaries.

  4. Subcompartmentalized Nanoreactors as Artificial Organelle with Intracellular Activity.

    PubMed

    Thingholm, Bo; Schattling, Philipp; Zhang, Yan; Städler, Brigitte

    2016-04-01

    Cell mimicry is an approach which aims at substituting missing or lost activity. In this context, the goal of artificial organelles is to provide intracellularly active nanoreactors to affect the cellular performance. So far, only a handful of reports discuss concepts addressing this challenge based on single-component reactors. Here, the assembly of nanoreactors equipped with glucose oxidase (GOx)-loaded liposomal subunits coated with a poly(dopamine) polymer layer and RGD targeting units is reported. When comparing different surface modifications, the uptake of the nanoreactors by endothelial cells and macrophages with applied shear stress is confirmed without inherent cytotoxicity. Furthermore, the encapsulation and preserved activity of GOx within the nanoreactors is shown. The intracellular activity is demonstrated by exposing macrophages with internalized nanoreactors to glucose and assessment of the cell viability after 6 and 24 h. The macrophage viability is found to be reduced due to the intracellularly produced hydrogen peroxide by GOx. This report on the first intracellular active subcompartmentalized nanoreactors is a considerable step in therapeutic cell mimicry.

  5. Multi-center, Prospective, Randomized, Controlled Investigational Device Exemption Clinical Trial Comparing Mobi-C Cervical Artificial Disc to Anterior Discectomy and Fusion in the Treatment of Symptomatic Degenerative Disc Disease in the Cervical Spine

    PubMed Central

    Bae, Hyun W.; Davis, Reginald; Gaede, Steven; Hoffman, Greg; Kim, Kee; Nunley, Pierce D.; Peterson, Daniel; Rashbaum, Ralph; Stokes, John

    2014-01-01

    Background Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is the gold standard for treating symptomatic cervical disc degeneration. Cervical total disc replacements (TDRs) have emerged as an alternative for some patients. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of a new TDR device compared with ACDF for treating single-level cervical disc degeneration. Methods This was a prospective, randomized, controlled, multicenter Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulated Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) study. A total of 245 patients were treated (164 TDR: 81 ACDF). The primary outcome measure was overall success based on improvement in Neck Disability Index (NDI), no subsequent surgical interventions, and no adverse events (AEs) classified as major complications. Secondary outcome measures included SF-12, visual analog scale (VAS) assessing neck and arm pain, patient satisfaction, radiographic range of motion, and adjacent level degeneration. Patients were evaluated preoperatively and postoperatively at 6 weeks, 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months. The hypothesis was that the TDR success rate was non-inferior to ACDF at 24 months. Results Overall success rates were 73.6% for TDR and 65.3% for ACDF, confirming non-inferiority (p < 0.0025). TDR demonstrated earlier improvements with significant differences in NDI scores at 6 weeks and 3 months, and VAS neck pain and SF-12 PCS scores at 6 weeks (p<0.05). Operative level range of motion in the TDR group was maintained throughout follow-up. Radiographic evidence of inferior adjacent segment degeneration was significantly greater with ACDF at 12 and 24 months (p < 0.05). AE rates were similar. Conclusions Mobi-C TDR is a safe and effective treatment for single-level disc degeneration, producing outcomes similar to ACDF with less adjacent segment degeneration. Level of Evidence: Level I. Clinical relevance: This study adds to the literature supporting cervical TDR as a viable option to ACDF in

  6. Developing an active artificial hair cell using nonlinear feedback control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joyce, Bryan S.; Tarazaga, Pablo A.

    2015-09-01

    The hair cells in the mammalian cochlea convert sound-induced vibrations into electrical signals. These cells have inspired a variety of artificial hair cells (AHCs) to serve as biologically inspired sound, fluid flow, and acceleration sensors and could one day replace damaged hair cells in humans. Most of these AHCs rely on passive transduction of stimulus while it is known that the biological cochlea employs active processes to amplify sound-induced vibrations and improve sound detection. In this work, an active AHC mimics the active, nonlinear behavior of the cochlea. The AHC consists of a piezoelectric bimorph beam subjected to a base excitation. A feedback control law is used to reduce the linear damping of the beam and introduce a cubic damping term which gives the AHC the desired nonlinear behavior. Model and experimental results show the AHC amplifies the response due to small base accelerations, has a higher frequency sensitivity than the passive system, and exhibits a compressive nonlinearity like that of the mammalian cochlea. This bio-inspired accelerometer could lead to new sensors with lower thresholds of detection, improved frequency sensitivities, and wider dynamic ranges.

  7. Photochemical chlorine and bromine activation from artificial saline snow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wren, S. N.; Donaldson, D. J.; Abbatt, J. P. D.

    2013-05-01

    The activation of reactive halogen species - particularly Cl2 - from sea ice and snow surfaces is not well understood. In this study, we used a photochemical snow reactor coupled to a chemical ionization mass spectrometer to investigate the production of Br2, BrCl and Cl2 from NaCl/NaBr-doped artificial snow samples. At temperatures above the NaCl-water eutectic, illumination of samples (λ > 310 nm) in the presence of gas phase O3 led to the accelerated release of Br2, BrCl and the release of Cl2 in a process that was significantly enhanced by acidity, high surface area and additional gas phase Br2. Cl2 production was only observed when both light and ozone were present. The total halogen release depended on [O3] and pre-freezing [NaCl]. Our observations support a "halogen explosion" mechanism occurring within the snowpack which is initiated by heterogeneous oxidation, and propagated by Br2 or BrCl photolysis and by recycling of HOBr and HOCl into the snowpack. Our study implicates an important role for active chemistry occurring within the interstitial air of aged (i.e., acidic) snow for halogen activation at polar sunrise.

  8. Photochemical chlorine and bromine activation from artificial saline snow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wren, S. N.; Donaldson, D. J.; Abbatt, J. P. D.

    2013-10-01

    The activation of reactive halogen species - particularly Cl2 - from sea ice and snow surfaces is not well understood. In this study, we used a photochemical snow reactor coupled to a chemical ionization mass spectrometer to investigate the production of Br2, BrCl and Cl2 from NaCl/NaBr-doped artificial snow samples. At temperatures above the NaCl-water eutectic, illumination of samples (λ > 310 nm) in the presence of gas phase O3 led to the accelerated release of Br2, BrCl and the release of Cl2 in a process that was significantly enhanced by acidity, high surface area and additional gas phase Br2. Cl2 production was only observed when both light and ozone were present. The total halogen release depended on [ozone] and pre-freezing [NaCl]. Our observations support a "halogen explosion" mechanism occurring within the snowpack, which is initiated by heterogeneous oxidation and propagated by Br2 or BrCl photolysis and by recycling of HOBr and HOCl into the snowpack. Our study implicates this important role of active chemistry occurring within the interstitial air of aged (i.e. acidic) snow for halogen activation at polar sunrise.

  9. Artificial neural network prediction of antisense oligodeoxynucleotide activity.

    PubMed

    Giddings, Michael C; Shah, Atul A; Freier, Sue; Atkins, John F; Gesteland, Raymond F; Matveeva, Olga V

    2002-10-01

    An mRNA transcript contains many potential antisense oligodeoxynucleotide target sites. Identification of the most efficacious targets remains an important and challenging problem. Building on separate work that revealed a strong correlation between the inclusion of short sequence motifs and the activity level of an oligo, we have developed a predictive artificial neural network system for mapping tetranucleotide motif content to antisense oligo activity. Trained for high-specificity prediction, the system has been cross-validated against a database of 348 oligos from the literature and a larger proprietary database of 908 oligos. In cross- validation tests the system identified effective oligos (i.e. oligos capable of reducing target mRNA expression to <25% that of the control) with 53% accuracy, in contrast to the <10% success rates commonly reported for trial-and-error oligo selection, suggesting a possible 5-fold reduction in the in vivo screening required to find an active oligo. We have implemented a web interface to a trained neural network. Given an RNA transcript as input, the system identifies the most likely oligo targets and provides estimates of the probabilities that oligos targeted against these sites will be effective. PMID:12364609

  10. Bolometric luminosity black hole growth time and slim accretion discs in active galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Netzer, Hagai; Trakhtenbrot, Benny

    2014-02-01

    We investigate the accretion rate, bolometric luminosity, black hole (BH) growth time and BH spin in a large active galactic nucleus (AGN) sample under the assumption that all such objects are powered via thin or slim accretion discs (ADs). We use direct estimates of the mass accretion rate, dot{M}, to show that many currently used values of Lbol and L/LEdd are either underestimated or overestimated because they are based on bolometric correction factors that are adjusted to the properties of moderately accreting AGNs and do not take into account the correct combination of BH mass, spin and accretion rate. The consistent application of AD physics to our sample of Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) AGNs leads to the following findings. (1) Even the most conservative assumption about the radiative efficiency of fast-accreting BHs shows that many of these sources must contain slim ADs. We illustrate this by estimating the fraction of such objects at various redshifts. (2) Many previously estimated BH growth times are inconsistent with the AD theory. In particular, the growth times of the fastest accreting BHs were overestimated in the past by large factors with important consequences to AGN evolution. (3) Currently used bolometric correction factors for low accretion rate very massive SDSS BHs are inconsistent with the AD theory. Applying the AD set of assumptions to such objects, combined with standard photoionization calculations of broad emission lines, leads to the conclusion that many such objects must contain fast-spinning BHs.

  11. Dpp Signaling Activity Requires Pentagone to Scale with Tissue Size in the Growing Drosophila Wing Imaginal Disc

    PubMed Central

    Pyrowolakis, George; Bergmann, Sven; Affolter, Markus

    2011-01-01

    The wing of the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, with its simple, two-dimensional structure, is a model organ well suited for a systems biology approach. The wing arises from an epithelial sac referred to as the wing imaginal disc, which undergoes a phase of massive growth and concomitant patterning during larval stages. The Decapentaplegic (Dpp) morphogen plays a central role in wing formation with its ability to co-coordinately regulate patterning and growth. Here, we asked whether the Dpp signaling activity scales, i.e. expands proportionally, with the growing wing imaginal disc. Using new methods for spatial and temporal quantification of Dpp activity and its scaling properties, we found that the Dpp response scales with the size of the growing tissue. Notably, scaling is not perfect at all positions in the field and the scaling of target gene domains is ensured specifically where they define vein positions. We also found that the target gene domains are not defined at constant concentration thresholds of the downstream Dpp activity gradients P-Mad and Brinker. Most interestingly, Pentagone, an important secreted feedback regulator of the pathway, plays a central role in scaling and acts as an expander of the Dpp gradient during disc growth. PMID:22039350

  12. Dpp signaling activity requires Pentagone to scale with tissue size in the growing Drosophila wing imaginal disc.

    PubMed

    Hamaratoglu, Fisun; de Lachapelle, Aitana Morton; Pyrowolakis, George; Bergmann, Sven; Affolter, Markus

    2011-10-01

    The wing of the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, with its simple, two-dimensional structure, is a model organ well suited for a systems biology approach. The wing arises from an epithelial sac referred to as the wing imaginal disc, which undergoes a phase of massive growth and concomitant patterning during larval stages. The Decapentaplegic (Dpp) morphogen plays a central role in wing formation with its ability to co-coordinately regulate patterning and growth. Here, we asked whether the Dpp signaling activity scales, i.e. expands proportionally, with the growing wing imaginal disc. Using new methods for spatial and temporal quantification of Dpp activity and its scaling properties, we found that the Dpp response scales with the size of the growing tissue. Notably, scaling is not perfect at all positions in the field and the scaling of target gene domains is ensured specifically where they define vein positions. We also found that the target gene domains are not defined at constant concentration thresholds of the downstream Dpp activity gradients P-Mad and Brinker. Most interestingly, Pentagone, an important secreted feedback regulator of the pathway, plays a central role in scaling and acts as an expander of the Dpp gradient during disc growth.

  13. Anti-urolithiatic activity of standardized extract of Biophytum sensitivum against zinc disc implantation induced urolithiasis in rats

    PubMed Central

    Pawar, Anil Tukaram; Vyawahare, Niraj S.

    2015-01-01

    Biophytum sensitivum (L.) DC (family: Oxalidaceae) has been used in the Indian indigenous system of medicine, Ayurveda, for the treatment of various health aliments including renal calculi. The present study was undertaken to investigate the anti-urolithiatic activity of standardized methanolic extract of whole plant of B. sensitivum (MBS) in rats. Urolithiasis was induced by surgical implantations of zinc disc in the urinary bladders of rats. Upon postsurgical recovery, different doses of MBS (viz., 100, 200, and 400 mg/kg body weight) were administered to zinc disc-implanted rats for the period of 7 days by the oral route. Anti-urolithiatic activity was evaluated by measuring various dimensions of stones and estimating levels of various biomarkers in serum and urine samples. A significant decrease in urinary output was observed in the disc-implanted animals, which was prevented by the MBS treatment. Supplementation with MBS caused significant improvement in glomerular filtration rate and protein excretion. The elevated levels of serum creatinine, uric acid, and blood urea nitrogen were also prevented by the MBS treatment. The MBS treatment showed reduced formation of deposition around the implanted zinc disc. The higher dose of MBS (400 mg/kg) found more effective. These results indicate that the administration of MBS significantly prevents the growth of urinary stones. The possible mechanism underlying this effect is mediated collectively through diuretic, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of the plant. The results concluded that the methanolic extract of whole plant of B. sensitivum possessed significant anti-urolithiatic activity. PMID:26605159

  14. A new code to study structures in collisionally active, perturbed debris discs: application to binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thébault, P.

    2012-01-01

    Context. Debris discs are traditionally studied using two distinct types of numerical models: statistical particle-in-a-box codes to study their collisional and size distribution evolution, and dynamical N-body models to study their spatial structure. The absence of collisions in N-body codes is in particular a major shortcoming, as collisional processes are expected to significantly alter the results obtained from pure N-body runs. Aims: We present a new numerical model, to study the spatial structure of perturbed debris discs in both a dynamical and collisional steady-state. We focus on the competing effects of gravitational perturbations by a massive body (planet or star), the collisional production of small grains, and the radiation pressure placing these grains in possibly dynamically unstable regions. Methods: We consider a disc of parent bodies in a dynamical steady-state, from which small radiation-pressure-affected grains are released in a series of runs, each corresponding to a different orbital position of the perturber, where particles are assigned a collisional destruction probability. These collisional runs produce successive position maps that are then recombined, following a complex procedure, to generate surface density profiles for each orbital position of the perturbing body. Results: We apply our code to the case of a circumprimary disc in a binary. We find pronounced structures inside and outside the dynamical stability regions. For low eB, the disc's structure is time varying, with spiral arms in the dynamically "forbidden" region precessing with the companion star. For high eB, the disc is strongly asymmetric but time invariant, with a pronounced density drop in the binary's periastron direction.

  15. Line and continuum radiation from the outer region of accretion discs in active galactic nuclei. I - Preliminary considerations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collin-Souffrin, S.

    1987-06-01

    The structure and emission of the optically thin region of steady accretion discs in Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN) is investigated. It is shown that this region is located far from the center (R/RG very large 102). If its only energy source is provided by accretion, the temperature is very low (1000 - 2000K) and therefore it cannot be identified with the broad line emitting region (BLR). The overall emission of the optically thin region is negligible, except in the infrared at a few microns, where it gives some contribution of the "5 μ-bump". However it is found that, if the disc is heated by the down scattered part of the non-thermal continuum observed in AGN, the physical parameters of the optically thin region satisfy the requirements of photoionization models for the line emission. Hard X-ray heating of the external regions of accretion discs is the source of the "missing energy" in the budget of the BLR (Collin-Souffrin, 1986) and moreover gives rise to an intense infrared thermal continuum able to account for the 5 μ bump. Finally this model could solve the "Fell problem".

  16. Artificial Limbs

    MedlinePlus

    ... you are missing an arm or leg, an artificial limb can sometimes replace it. The device, which is ... activities such as walking, eating, or dressing. Some artificial limbs let you function nearly as well as before.

  17. NRIP is newly identified as a Z-disc protein, activating calmodulin signaling for skeletal muscle contraction and regeneration.

    PubMed

    Chen, Hsin-Hsiung; Chen, Wen-Pin; Yan, Wan-Lun; Huang, Yuan-Chun; Chang, Szu-Wei; Fu, Wen-Mei; Su, Ming-Jai; Yu, I-Shing; Tsai, Tzung-Chieh; Yan, Yu-Ting; Tsao, Yeou-Ping; Chen, Show-Li

    2015-11-15

    Nuclear receptor interaction protein (NRIP, also known as DCAF6 and IQWD1) is a Ca(2+)-dependent calmodulin-binding protein. In this study, we newly identify NRIP as a Z-disc protein in skeletal muscle. NRIP-knockout mice were generated and found to have reduced muscle strength, susceptibility to fatigue and impaired adaptive exercise performance. The mechanisms of NRIP-regulated muscle contraction depend on NRIP being downstream of Ca(2+) signaling, where it stimulates activation of both 'calcineurin-nuclear factor of activated T-cells, cytoplasmic 1' (CaN-NFATc1; also known as NFATC1) and calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) through interaction with calmodulin (CaM), resulting in the induction of mitochondrial activity and the expression of genes encoding the slow class of myosin, and in the regulation of Ca(2+) homeostasis through the internal Ca(2+) stores of the sarcoplasmic reticulum. Moreover, NRIP-knockout mice have a delayed regenerative capacity. The amount of NRIP can be enhanced after muscle injury and is responsible for muscle regeneration, which is associated with the increased expression of myogenin, desmin and embryonic myosin heavy chain during myogenesis, as well as for myotube formation. In conclusion, NRIP is a novel Z-disc protein that is important for skeletal muscle strength and regenerative capacity.

  18. ISSLS PRIZE WINNER: INHIBITION OF NF-κB ACTIVITY AMELIORATES AGE-ASSOCIATED DISC DEGENERATION IN A MOUSE MODEL OF ACCELERATED AGING

    PubMed Central

    Nasto, Luigi A.; Seo, Hyoung-Yeon; Robinson, Andria R.; Tilstra, Jeremy S.; Clauson, Cheryl L.; Sowa, Gwendolyn A.; Ngo, Kevin; Dong, Qing; Pola, Enrico; Lee, Joon Y.; Niedernhofer, Laura J.; Kang, James D.; Robbins, Paul D.; Vo, Nam V.

    2012-01-01

    Study Design NF-κB activity was pharmacologically and genetically blocked in an accelerated aging mouse model to mitigate age-related disc degenerative changes. Objective To study the mediatory role of NF-κB signaling pathway in age-dependent intervertebral disc degeneration. Summary of Background Data Aging is a major contributor to intervertebral disc degeneration (IDD), but the molecular mechanism behind this process is poorly understood. NF-κB is a family of transcription factors which play a central role in mediating cellular response to damage, stress, and inflammation. Growing evidence implicates chronic NF-κB activation as a culprit in many aging-related diseases, but its role in aging-related IDD has not been adequately explored. We studied the effects of NF-κB inhibition on IDD using a DNA repair-deficient mouse model of accelerated aging (Ercc1-/Δ mice) previously been reported to exhibit age-related IDD. Methods Systemic inhibition of NF-κB activation was achieved either genetically by deletion of one allele of the NF-κB subunit p65 (Ercc1-/Δp65+/- mice) or pharmacologically by chronic intra-peritoneal administration of the Nemo Binding Domain (8K-NBD) peptide to block the formation of the upstream activator of NF-κB, IκB Inducible Kinase (IKK), in Ercc1-/Δ mice. Disc cellularity, total proteoglycan content and proteoglycan synthesis of treated mice and untreated controls were assessed. Results Decreased disc matrix proteoglycan content, a hallmark feature of IDD, and elevated disc NF-κB activity were observed in discs of progeroid Ercc1-/Δ mice and naturally aged wild-type compared to young WT mice. Systemic inhibition of NF-κB by the 8K-NBD peptide in Ercc1-/Δ mice increased disc proteoglycan synthesis and ameriolated loss disc cellularity and matrix proteoglycan. These results were confirmed genetically by using the p65 haploinsufficient Ercc1-/Δp65+/- mice. Conclusion These findings demonstrate that the IKK/NF-κB signaling pathway

  19. Early active rehabilitation after surgery for lumbar disc herniation: a prospective, randomized study of psychometric assessment in 50 patients.

    PubMed

    Kjellby-Wendt, G; Styf, J; Carlsson, S G

    2001-10-01

    In a randomized study, using psychometric assessment, we evaluated two training programs before and after surgical treatment of lumbar disc herniation. 26 patients were treated according to an early active training program (treatment group). 24 patients followed a traditional less active training program (control group). Before surgery, the patients filled in the following questionnaires 3 and 12 months after surgery: Multidimensional Pain Inventory (MPI), State and Trait Anxiety Inventory, and Beck Depression Inventory. Pain was assessed by the patient's pain drawing and a visual analog scale. Both groups improved as regards pain severity and state of anxiety. The MPI parameter, pain interference, improved more in the early active treatment group than in the control group. This suggests that the early active training program has a positive effect on the way patients cope with pain in their daily lives. PMID:11728081

  20. Effectiveness of behavioral graded activity after first-time lumbar disc surgery: short term results of a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Ostelo, R W J G; de Vet, H C W; Berfelo, M W; Kerckhoffs, M R; Vlaeyen, J W S; Wolters, P M J C; van den Brandt, P A

    2003-12-01

    Behavioral approaches to treating patients following lumbar disc surgery are becoming increasingly popular. The treatment method is based on the assumption that pain and pain disability are not only influenced by somatic pathology, if found, but also by psychological and social factors. A recent study highlighted the effectiveness of cognitive-behavioral interventions, as compared to no treatment, for chronic low back patients. However, to the authors' knowledge, there is no randomized controlled trial that evaluates a behavioral program for patients following lumbar disc surgery. The purpose of this study was to assess the effectiveness of a behavioral graded activity (BGA) program compared to usual care (UC) in physiotherapy following first-time lumbar disc surgery. The BGA program was a patient-tailored intervention based upon operant therapy. The essence of the BGA is to teach patients that it is safe to increase activity levels. The study was designed as a randomized controlled trial. Assessments were carried out before and after treatment by an observer blinded to treatment allocation. Patients suffering residual symptoms restricting their activities of daily living and/or work at the 6 weeks post-surgery consultation by the neurosurgeon were included. The exclusion criteria were: complications during surgery, any relevant underlying pathology, and any contraindication to physiotherapy or the BGA program. Primary outcome measures were the patient's Global Perceived Effect and the functional status. Secondary measures were: fear of movement, viewing pain as extremely threatening, pain, severity of the main complaint, range of motion, and relapses. Physiotherapists in the BGA group received proper training. Between November 1997 and December 1999, 105 patients were randomized; 53 into the UC group and 52 into the BGA group. The unadjusted analysis shows a 19.3% (95% CI: 0.1 to 38.5) statistically significant difference to the advantage of the UC group on Global

  1. Dependence of Characteristics of SURA Induced Artificial ULF/VLF Signals on Geomagnetic Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kotik, D. S.; Ryabov, A. V.; Ermakova, E. N.; Pershin, A. V.

    2015-10-01

    A comprehensive study of artificial ionospheric signal generation in the ULF/VLF bands at SURA facility in Russia was conducted during the past 4 years. We investigated the influence of geomagnetic activity on the characteristics of artificial low-frequency signals under the background of increasing solar activity. No correlation of artificial ULF signals with variations of Earth's magnetic field was observed for weak geomagnetic disturbances (Kp ≤ 3) while the VLF signals increased in the growth phase of the geomagnetic perturbation. In case of strong magnetic storm (Kp ≥ 5+) a tendency of the amplitude of the ULF/VLF signals decrease with increasing magnetic disturbance was observed. Sometimes, the modulation of artificial ULF signals with a period of 15-30 s was detected in the decay phase of magnetic storms. During storm time, a change in the polarization of artificial VLF emissions was detected. The right polarization becomes predominant. Interpretation of observed peculiarities of artificial VLF signals is given in the context of the physical mechanism of ionospheric current drive by RF pumping.

  2. Isolated Optic Disc Tuberculosis

    PubMed Central

    Mansour, Ahmad M.; Tabbara, Khalid F.; Tabbarah, Zuhair

    2015-01-01

    We present a healthy male subject who developed progressive visual loss in the left eye initially diagnosed as optic neuritis. Upon suspicion of infectious etiology, testing was positive for tuberculosis. There were no signs or symptoms of active systemic tuberculosis infection. The patient responded swiftly to antimycobacterial therapy with return of vision and resolution of disc swelling. Positive purified protein derivative skin test, negative chest radiograph, negative systemic workup, negative workup for other causes of unilateral optic neuritis and quick response to mycobacterial therapy reaffirm the entity of isolated optic disc tuberculosis similar to isolated choroidal tuberculosis without systemic manifestation. PMID:26483675

  3. A Novel Wearable Sensor-Based Human Activity Recognition Approach Using Artificial Hydrocarbon Networks.

    PubMed

    Ponce, Hiram; Martínez-Villaseñor, María de Lourdes; Miralles-Pechuán, Luis

    2016-07-05

    Human activity recognition has gained more interest in several research communities given that understanding user activities and behavior helps to deliver proactive and personalized services. There are many examples of health systems improved by human activity recognition. Nevertheless, the human activity recognition classification process is not an easy task. Different types of noise in wearable sensors data frequently hamper the human activity recognition classification process. In order to develop a successful activity recognition system, it is necessary to use stable and robust machine learning techniques capable of dealing with noisy data. In this paper, we presented the artificial hydrocarbon networks (AHN) technique to the human activity recognition community. Our artificial hydrocarbon networks novel approach is suitable for physical activity recognition, noise tolerance of corrupted data sensors and robust in terms of different issues on data sensors. We proved that the AHN classifier is very competitive for physical activity recognition and is very robust in comparison with other well-known machine learning methods.

  4. Rapid decrease in active tension generated by C2C12 myotubes after termination of artificial exercise.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Hideaki; Hirano, Minoru; Shimizu, Kazunori; Nagamori, Eiji

    2010-12-01

    We found that the active tension of C2C12 myotubes that had been subjected to artificial exercise for ~10 days decreased rapidly after termination of the artificial exercise. When differentiated C2C12 myotubes were subjected to continuous 1 Hz artificial exercise for ~10 days, the active tension increased to ~4× compared to that before application of the artificial exercise, as reported previously. On termination of artificial exercise, the active tension decreased rapidly, the level reaching that before application of the artificial exercise within 8 h. Concomitant with the decrease in the active tension, an increase in the amount of ubiquitinated proteins was observed. Real time RT-PCR revealed that the expression of several genes associated with atrophy, namely Smc6, Vegfa, Jarid2, Kitl, Cds2, Inmt, Fasn, Neurl, Topors, and Cul2, were also changed after termination of artificial exercise. These results indicate that termination of artificial exercise induced atrophy-like responses of C2C12 myotubes. Here we found that during the decrease in active tension, the sarcomere structure, especially the thin filament structure, decayed rapidly after termination of artificial exercise. On reapplication of the artificial exercise, the active tension was restored rapidly, within 8 h, concomitant with reformation of the sarcomere structure. These results indicate that disassembly of the sarcomere structure may be one of the reasons for the active tension decrease during disuse muscle atrophy.

  5. Sorption and biodegradation of artificial sweeteners in activated sludge processes.

    PubMed

    Tran, Ngoc Han; Gan, Jie; Nguyen, Viet Tung; Chen, Huiting; You, Luhua; Duarah, Ankur; Zhang, Lifeng; Gin, Karina Yew-Hoong

    2015-12-01

    There is limited information on the occurrence and removal of artificial sweeteners (ASs) in biological wastewater treatment plants, and in particular, the contribution of sorption and biodegradation to their removal. This study investigated the fate of ASs in both the aqueous and solid phases in a water reclamation plant (WRP). All the four targeted ASs, i.e. acesulfame (ACE), sucralose (SUC), cyclamate (CYC) and saccharine (SAC), were detected in both the aqueous and solid phases of raw influent and primary effluent samples. The concentrations of CYC and SAC in secondary effluent or MBR permeate were below their method detection limits. ACE and SUC were persistent throughout the WRP, whereas CYC and SAC were completely removed in biological treatment (>99%). Experimental results showed that sorption played a minor role in the elimination of the ASs due to the relatively low sorption coefficients (Kd), where Kd<500L/kg. In particular, the poor removal of ACE and SUC in the WRP may be attributed to their physiochemical properties (i.e. logKow<0 or logD<3.2) and chemical structures containing strong withdrawing electron functional groups in heterocyclic rings (i.e. chloride and sulfonate). PMID:26342347

  6. Sorption and biodegradation of artificial sweeteners in activated sludge processes.

    PubMed

    Tran, Ngoc Han; Gan, Jie; Nguyen, Viet Tung; Chen, Huiting; You, Luhua; Duarah, Ankur; Zhang, Lifeng; Gin, Karina Yew-Hoong

    2015-12-01

    There is limited information on the occurrence and removal of artificial sweeteners (ASs) in biological wastewater treatment plants, and in particular, the contribution of sorption and biodegradation to their removal. This study investigated the fate of ASs in both the aqueous and solid phases in a water reclamation plant (WRP). All the four targeted ASs, i.e. acesulfame (ACE), sucralose (SUC), cyclamate (CYC) and saccharine (SAC), were detected in both the aqueous and solid phases of raw influent and primary effluent samples. The concentrations of CYC and SAC in secondary effluent or MBR permeate were below their method detection limits. ACE and SUC were persistent throughout the WRP, whereas CYC and SAC were completely removed in biological treatment (>99%). Experimental results showed that sorption played a minor role in the elimination of the ASs due to the relatively low sorption coefficients (Kd), where Kd<500L/kg. In particular, the poor removal of ACE and SUC in the WRP may be attributed to their physiochemical properties (i.e. logKow<0 or logD<3.2) and chemical structures containing strong withdrawing electron functional groups in heterocyclic rings (i.e. chloride and sulfonate).

  7. Galaxy Zoo: the effect of bar-driven fuelling on the presence of an active galactic nucleus in disc galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galloway, Melanie A.; Willett, Kyle W.; Fortson, Lucy F.; Cardamone, Carolin N.; Schawinski, Kevin; Cheung, Edmond; Lintott, Chris J.; Masters, Karen L.; Melvin, Thomas; Simmons, Brooke D.

    2015-04-01

    We study the influence of the presence of a strong bar in disc galaxies which host an active galactic nucleus (AGN). Using data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and morphological classifications from the Galaxy Zoo 2 project, we create a volume-limited sample of 19 756 disc galaxies at 0.01 < z < 0.05 which have been visually examined for the presence of a bar. Within this sample, AGN host galaxies have a higher overall percentage of bars (51.8 per cent) than inactive galaxies exhibiting central star formation (37.1 per cent). This difference is primarily due to known effects: that the presence of both AGN and galactic bars is strongly correlated with both the stellar mass and integrated colour of the host galaxy. We control for this effect by examining the difference in AGN fraction between barred and unbarred galaxies in fixed bins of mass and colour. Once this effect is accounted for, there remains a small but statistically significant increase that represents 16 per cent of the average barred AGN fraction. Using the L_{[O III]}/MBH ratio as a measure of AGN strength, we show that barred AGNs do not exhibit stronger accretion than unbarred AGNs at a fixed mass and colour. The data are consistent with a model in which bar-driven fuelling does contribute to the probability of an actively growing black hole, but in which other dynamical mechanisms must contribute to the direct AGN fuelling via smaller, non-axisymmetric perturbations.

  8. Active galactic nuclei at z ˜ 1.5 - III. Accretion discs and black hole spin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capellupo, D. M.; Netzer, H.; Lira, P.; Trakhtenbrot, B.; Mejía-Restrepo, J.

    2016-07-01

    This is the third paper in a series describing the spectroscopic properties of a sample of 39 AGN at z ˜ 1.5, selected to cover a large range in black hole mass (MBH) and Eddington ratio (L/LEdd). In this paper, we continue the analysis of the VLT/X-shooter observations of our sample with the addition of nine new sources. We use an improved Bayesian procedure, which takes into account intrinsic reddening, and improved MBH estimates, to fit thin accretion disc (AD) models to the observed spectra and constrain the spin parameter (a*) of the central black holes. We can fit 37 out of 39 AGN with the thin AD model, and for those with satisfactory fits, we obtain constraints on the spin parameter of the BHs, with the constraints becoming generally less well defined with decreasing BH mass. Our spin parameter estimates range from ˜-0.6 to maximum spin for our sample, and our results are consistent with the `spin-up' scenario of BH spin evolution. We also discuss how the results of our analysis vary with the inclusion of non-simultaneous GALEX photometry in our thin AD fitting. Simultaneous spectra covering the rest-frame optical through far-UV are necessary to definitively test the thin AD theory and obtain the best constraints on the spin parameter.

  9. Artificial masculinization in tilapia involves androgen receptor activation.

    PubMed

    Golan, Matan; Levavi-Sivan, Berta

    2014-10-01

    Estrogens have a pivotal role in natural female sexual differentiation of tilapia while lack of steroids results in testicular development. Despite the fact that androgens do not participate in natural sex differentiation, synthetic androgens, mainly 17-α-methyltestosterone (MT) are effective in the production of all-male fish in aquaculture. The sex inversion potency of synthetic androgens may arise from their androgenic activity or else as inhibitors of aromatase activity. The current study is an attempt to differentiate between the two alleged activities in order to evaluate their contribution to the sex inversion process and aid the search for novel sex inversion agents. In the present study, MT inhibited aromatase activity, when applied in vitro as did the non-aromatizable androgen dihydrotestosterone (DHT). In comparison, exposure to fadrozole, a specific aromatase inhibitor, was considerably more effective. Androgenic activity of MT was evaluated by exposure of Sciaenochromis fryeri fry to the substance and testing for the appearance of blue color. Flutamide, an androgen antagonist, administered concomitantly with MT, reduced the appearance of the blue color and the sex inversion potency of MT in a dose-dependent manner. In tilapia, administration of MT, fadrozole or DHT resulted in efficient sex inversion while flutamide reduced the sex inversion potency of all three compounds. In the case of MT and DHT the decrease in sex inversion efficiency caused by flutamide is most likely due to the direct blocking of the androgen binding to its cognate receptor. The negative effect of flutamide on the efficiency of the fadrozole treatment may indicate that the masculinizing activity of fadrozole may be attributed to excess, un-aromatized, androgens accumulated in the differentiating gonad. The present study shows that when androgen receptors are blocked, there is a reduction in the efficiency of sex inversion treatments. Our results suggest that in contrast to

  10. Methods to monitor distribution and metabolic activity of mesenchymal stem cells following in vivo injection into nucleotomized porcine intervertebral discs.

    PubMed

    Omlor, G W; Bertram, H; Kleinschmidt, K; Fischer, J; Brohm, K; Guehring, T; Anton, M; Richter, Wiltrud

    2010-04-01

    Intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration involves a series of biochemical and morphological changes leading to loss of spinal stability and flexibility. Cell therapy is promising to reconstitute IVDs with new cells, however, sustained metabolic activity seems crucial for an active contribution to regeneration. The aim of the present study was to establish methods for separate follow up of persistence and activity of autologous porcine mesenchymal stem cells (pMSC) after implantation into IVDs of Goettingen minipigs in vivo in order to conclude about the potential of such an intervention strategy. For quantitative follow up, the transfer matrix was supplemented with Al(2)O(3) particles and pMSC which were retrovirally labeled with firefly luciferase (pMSC-Luc). Six mature Goettingen minipigs underwent matrix based cell transfer after partial nucleotomy of lumbar IVDs (n = 24). Day 0 and day 3 segments were analyzed for retained volume of Al(2)O(3) particles by micro-computed-tomography (muCT) and for cell activity by luciferase enzyme assessment. Three days after injection a reduction of Al(2)O(3) particles (P = 0.028) to about 9% and of pMSC-Luc activity to about 7% of initial values (P = 0.003) was detected, which suggests loss of 90% of the implant material under in vivo conditions without evidence for reduced pMSC-Luc metabolic activity (P = 0.887). In conclusion, separate follow up of implant material and cell activity was possible and unravels problems with in vivo implant persistence after annular puncture rather than quick loss of cell activity. Therefore, IVD-regeneration-strategies should increasingly focus on annulus reconstruction in order to reduce implant loss due to annular failure.

  11. Disc size regulation in the brood cell building behavior of leaf-cutter bee, Megachile tsurugensis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jong-Yoon

    2007-12-01

    The leaf-cutter bee, Megachile tsurugensis, builds a brood cell in a preexisting tunnel with leaf discs that she cuts in decreasing sizes and assembles them like a Russian matryoshka doll. By experimentally manipulating the brood cell, it was investigated how she regulates the size of leaf discs that fit in the brood cell’s internal volume. When the internal volume was artificially increased by removing a bulk of leaf discs, she decreased the leaf disc size, although increasing it would have made the leaf disc more fitting in the increased internal volume. As a reverse manipulation, when the internal volume was decreased by inserting a group of inner layers of preassembled leaf discs to a brood cell, she decreased the leaf disc size, so that the leaf disc could fit in the decreased internal volume. These results suggest that she uses at least two different mechanisms to regulate the disc size: the use of some internal memory about the degree of building work accomplished in the first and of sensory feedback of dimensional information at the construction site in the second manipulation, respectively. It was concluded that a stigmergic mechanism, an immediate sensory feedback from the brood cell changed by the building work, alone cannot explain the details of the bee’s behavior particularly with respect to her initial response to the first manipulation. For a more complete explanation of the behavior exhibited by the solitary bee, two additional behavioral elements, reinforcement of building activity and processing of dimensional information, were discussed along with stigmergy.

  12. Disc size regulation in the brood cell building behavior of leaf-cutter bee, Megachile tsurugensis.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jong-yoon

    2007-12-01

    The leaf-cutter bee, Megachile tsurugensis, builds a brood cell in a preexisting tunnel with leaf discs that she cuts in decreasing sizes and assembles them like a Russian matryoshka doll. By experimentally manipulating the brood cell, it was investigated how she regulates the size of leaf discs that fit in the brood cell's internal volume. When the internal volume was artificially increased by removing a bulk of leaf discs, she decreased the leaf disc size, although increasing it would have made the leaf disc more fitting in the increased internal volume. As a reverse manipulation, when the internal volume was decreased by inserting a group of inner layers of preassembled leaf discs to a brood cell, she decreased the leaf disc size, so that the leaf disc could fit in the decreased internal volume. These results suggest that she uses at least two different mechanisms to regulate the disc size: the use of some internal memory about the degree of building work accomplished in the first and of sensory feedback of dimensional information at the construction site in the second manipulation, respectively. It was concluded that a stigmergic mechanism, an immediate sensory feedback from the brood cell changed by the building work, alone cannot explain the details of the bee's behavior particularly with respect to her initial response to the first manipulation. For a more complete explanation of the behavior exhibited by the solitary bee, two additional behavioral elements, reinforcement of building activity and processing of dimensional information, were discussed along with stigmergy. PMID:17563863

  13. Optimal Recognition Method of Human Activities Using Artificial Neural Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oniga, Stefan; József, Sütő

    2015-12-01

    The aim of this research is an exhaustive analysis of the various factors that may influence the recognition rate of the human activity using wearable sensors data. We made a total of 1674 simulations on a publically released human activity database by a group of researcher from the University of California at Berkeley. In a previous research, we analyzed the influence of the number of sensors and their placement. In the present research we have examined the influence of the number of sensor nodes, the type of sensor node, preprocessing algorithms, type of classifier and its parameters. The final purpose is to find the optimal setup for best recognition rates with lowest hardware and software costs.

  14. Out-of-Equilibrium effects in suspensions of light-activated artificial microwimmers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palacci, Jeremie; Sacanna, Stefano; Pine, David; Chaikin, Paul; CSMR, NYU Team

    2011-11-01

    We present a new type of colloidal artificial swimmers propelled by the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide and activated by light. The effect is reversible and allows external control of the swimming/non swimming behavior of the particles. Moreover the bulk synthesis makes possible the study of very concentrated assemblies of monodisperse and identical microswimmers. These active agents are used to explore fancy effects of out-of-equilibrium systems, e.g. clustering, ``tugboat'' effect.

  15. Localized epigenetic silencing of a damage-activated WNT enhancer limits regeneration in mature Drosophila imaginal discs

    PubMed Central

    Harris, Robin E; Setiawan, Linda; Saul, Josh; Hariharan, Iswar K

    2016-01-01

    Many organisms lose the capacity to regenerate damaged tissues as they mature. Damaged Drosophila imaginal discs regenerate efficiently early in the third larval instar (L3) but progressively lose this ability. This correlates with reduced damage-responsive expression of multiple genes, including the WNT genes wingless (wg) and Wnt6. We demonstrate that damage-responsive expression of both genes requires a bipartite enhancer whose activity declines during L3. Within this enhancer, a damage-responsive module stays active throughout L3, while an adjacent silencing element nucleates increasing levels of epigenetic silencing restricted to this enhancer. Cas9-mediated deletion of the silencing element alleviates WNT repression, but is, in itself, insufficient to promote regeneration. However, directing Myc expression to the blastema overcomes repression of multiple genes, including wg, and restores cellular responses necessary for regeneration. Localized epigenetic silencing of damage-responsive enhancers can therefore restrict regenerative capacity in maturing organisms without compromising gene functions regulated by developmental signals. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.11588.001 PMID:26840050

  16. Modeling and optimization of an elastic arthroplastic disc for a degenerated disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghouchani, Azadeh; Ravari, Mohammad; Mahmoudi, Farid

    2011-10-01

    A three-dimensional finite element model (FEM) of the L3-L4 motion segment using ABAQUS v 6.9 has been developed. The model took into account the material nonlinearities and is imposed different loading conditions. In this study, we validated the model by comparison of its predictions with several sets of experimental data. Disc deformation under compression and segmental rotational motions under moment loads for the normal disc model agreed well with the corresponding in vivo studies. By linking ABAQUS with MATLAB 2010.a, we determined the optimal Young s modulus as well as the Poisson's ratio for the artificial disc under different physiologic loading conditions. The results of the present study confirmed that a well-designed elastic arthroplastic disc preferably has an annulus modulus of 19.1 MPa and 1.24 MPa for nucleus section and Poisson ratio of 0.41 and 0.47 respectively. Elastic artificial disc with such properties can then achieve the goal of restoring the disc height and mechanical function of intact disc under different loading conditions and so can reduce low back pain which is mostly caused due to disc degeneration.

  17. Mapping the Homodimer Interface of an Optimized, Artificial, Transmembrane Protein Activator of the Human Erythropoietin Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Bears, Zachary; Barrera, Francisco N.; Alonso, Miriam; Engelman, Donald M.; DiMaio, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Transmembrane proteins constitute a large fraction of cellular proteins, and specific interactions involving membrane-spanning protein segments play an important role in protein oligomerization, folding, and function. We previously isolated an artificial, dimeric, 44-amino acid transmembrane protein that activates the human erythropoietin receptor (hEPOR) in trans. This artificial protein supports limited erythroid differentiation of primary human hematopoietic progenitor cells in vitro, even though it does not resemble erythropoietin, the natural ligand of this receptor. Here, we used a directed-evolution approach to explore the structural basis for the ability of transmembrane proteins to activate the hEPOR. A library that expresses thousands of mutants of the transmembrane activator was screened for variants that were more active than the original isolate at inducing growth factor independence in mouse cells expressing the hEPOR. The most active mutant, EBC5-16, supports erythroid differentiation in human cells with activity approaching that of EPO, as assessed by cell-surface expression of glycophorin A, a late-stage marker of erythroid differentiation. EBC5-16 contains a single isoleucine to serine substitution at position 25, which increases its ability to form dimers. Genetic studies confirmed the importance of dimerization for activity and identified the residues constituting the homodimer interface of EBC5-16. The interface requires a GxxxG dimer packing motif and a small amino acid at position 25 for maximal activity, implying that tight packing of the EBC5-16 dimer is a crucial determinant of activity. These experiments identified an artificial protein that causes robust activation of its target in a natural host cell, demonstrated the importance of dimerization of this protein for engagement of the hEPOR, and provided the framework for future structure-function studies of this novel mechanism of receptor activation. PMID:24788775

  18. Redundant disc

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barack, W. N.; Domas, P. A.; Beekman, S. W. (Inventor)

    1978-01-01

    A rotatable disc is described that consists of parallel plates tightly joined together for rotation about a hub. Each plate is provided with several angularly projecting spaced lands. The lands of each plate are interposed in alternating relationship between the lands of the next adjacent plate. In this manner, circumferential displacement of adjacent sectors in any one plate is prevented in the event that a crack develops. Each plate is redundantly sized so that, in event of structural failure of one plate, the remaining plates support a proportionate share of the load of the failed plate. The plates are prevented from separating laterally through the inclusion of generally radially extending splines which are inserted to interlock cooperating, circumferentially adjacent lands.

  19. A Novel Wearable Sensor-Based Human Activity Recognition Approach Using Artificial Hydrocarbon Networks

    PubMed Central

    Ponce, Hiram; Martínez-Villaseñor, María de Lourdes; Miralles-Pechuán, Luis

    2016-01-01

    Human activity recognition has gained more interest in several research communities given that understanding user activities and behavior helps to deliver proactive and personalized services. There are many examples of health systems improved by human activity recognition. Nevertheless, the human activity recognition classification process is not an easy task. Different types of noise in wearable sensors data frequently hamper the human activity recognition classification process. In order to develop a successful activity recognition system, it is necessary to use stable and robust machine learning techniques capable of dealing with noisy data. In this paper, we presented the artificial hydrocarbon networks (AHN) technique to the human activity recognition community. Our artificial hydrocarbon networks novel approach is suitable for physical activity recognition, noise tolerance of corrupted data sensors and robust in terms of different issues on data sensors. We proved that the AHN classifier is very competitive for physical activity recognition and is very robust in comparison with other well-known machine learning methods. PMID:27399696

  20. A Novel Wearable Sensor-Based Human Activity Recognition Approach Using Artificial Hydrocarbon Networks.

    PubMed

    Ponce, Hiram; Martínez-Villaseñor, María de Lourdes; Miralles-Pechuán, Luis

    2016-01-01

    Human activity recognition has gained more interest in several research communities given that understanding user activities and behavior helps to deliver proactive and personalized services. There are many examples of health systems improved by human activity recognition. Nevertheless, the human activity recognition classification process is not an easy task. Different types of noise in wearable sensors data frequently hamper the human activity recognition classification process. In order to develop a successful activity recognition system, it is necessary to use stable and robust machine learning techniques capable of dealing with noisy data. In this paper, we presented the artificial hydrocarbon networks (AHN) technique to the human activity recognition community. Our artificial hydrocarbon networks novel approach is suitable for physical activity recognition, noise tolerance of corrupted data sensors and robust in terms of different issues on data sensors. We proved that the AHN classifier is very competitive for physical activity recognition and is very robust in comparison with other well-known machine learning methods. PMID:27399696

  1. Mechanotransduction in intervertebral discs

    PubMed Central

    Tsai, Tsung-Ting; Cheng, Chao-Min; Chen, Chien-Fu; Lai, Po-Liang

    2014-01-01

    Mechanotransduction plays a critical role in intracellular functioning—it allows cells to translate external physical forces into internal biochemical activities, thereby affecting processes ranging from proliferation and apoptosis to gene expression and protein synthesis in a complex web of interactions and reactions. Accordingly, aberrant mechanotransduction can either lead to, or be a result of, a variety of diseases or degenerative states. In this review, we provide an overview of mechanotransduction in the context of intervertebral discs, with a focus on the latest methods of investigating mechanotransduction and the most recent findings regarding the means and effects of mechanotransduction in healthy and degenerative discs. We also provide some discussion of potential directions for future research and treatments. PMID:25267492

  2. [Cervical disc herniation].

    PubMed

    Schnake, K J; Hoffmann, C-H; Kandziora, F

    2012-12-01

    The cervical disc herniation is characterized by prolapsed nucleus pulposus material through the annulus into the spinal canal. The local mechanical or chemical irritation of neural structures typically leads to symptoms of radiculopathy, cervicocephalgia or myelopathy. Pronounced sensorimotor deficits or intractable pain constitute surgical treatment. In all other cases conservative treatment is indicated, including pain medication, active and passive physiotherapy, and local injections, respectively. Anterior cervical discectomy and interbody fusion (ACDF) is still the surgical treatment of choice. Predominantly, cages with or without plates are in use to obtain solid fusion. The implantation of a total disc replacement is a viable alternative, if no contraindications exist. Other surgical techniques may be performed in proper selected cases. The overall clinical and radiological results of both surgical and conservative treatment are good. PMID:23296562

  3. Accelerometer signal-based human activity recognition using augmented autoregressive model coefficients and artificial neural nets.

    PubMed

    Khan, A M; Lee, Y K; Kim, T S

    2008-01-01

    Automatic recognition of human activities is one of the important and challenging research areas in proactive and ubiquitous computing. In this work, we present some preliminary results of recognizing human activities using augmented features extracted from the activity signals measured using a single triaxial accelerometer sensor and artificial neural nets. The features include autoregressive (AR) modeling coefficients of activity signals, signal magnitude areas (SMA), and title angles (TA). We have recognized four human activities using AR coefficients (ARC) only, ARC with SMA, and ARC with SMA and TA. With the last augmented features, we have achieved the recognition rate above 99% for all four activities including lying, standing, walking, and running. With our proposed technique, real time recognition of some human activities is possible.

  4. Disc-planet interactions in subkeplerian discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paardekooper, S.-J.

    2009-11-01

    Context: One class of protoplanetary disc models, the X-wind model, predicts strongly subkeplerian orbital gas velocities, a configuration that can be sustained by magnetic tension. Aims: We investigate disc-planet interactions in these subkeplerian discs, focusing on orbital migration for low-mass planets and gap formation for high-mass planets. Methods: We use linear calculations and nonlinear hydrodynamical simulations to measure the torque and look at gap formation. In both cases, the subkeplerian nature of the disc is treated as a fixed external constraint. Results: We show that, depending on the degree to which the disc is subkeplerian, the torque on low-mass planets varies between the usual type I torque and the one-sided outer Lindblad torque, which is also negative but an order of magnitude stronger. In strongly subkeplerian discs, corotation effects can be ignored, making migration fast and inward. Gap formation near the planet's orbit is more difficult in such discs, since there are no resonances close to the planet accommodating angular momentum transport. The location of the gap is shifted inwards with respect to the planet, leaving the planet on the outside of a surface density depression. Conclusions: Depending on the degree to which a protoplanetary disc is subkeplerian, disc-planet interactions can be very different from the usual Keplerian picture, making these discs in general more hazardous for young planets.

  5. Effect of voluntary vs. artificial activation on the relationship of muscle torque to speed

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dudley, Gary A.; Harris, Robert T.; Duvoisin, Marc R.; Hather, Bruce M.; Buchanan, Paul

    1990-01-01

    The suggestion by Phillips and Petrofsky (1980) and Wickiewicz et al. (1984) that artificial activation of the knee extensor muscles should result in greater relative changes in torque than those evident with maximal voluntary activation is examined by investigating the speed-torque relationship of the right knee extensor muscle group in eight human subjects in whom activation was achieved by 'maximal' voluntary effort or by electrical stimulation. Torque was measured at a specific knee angle during isokinetic concentric or eccentric actions at velocities between 0.17 and 3.66 rad/s and during isometric actions. It is shown that, with artificial activation, the relative changes in both eccentric and concentric torque were greater as the speed increased; the speed-torque relationship was independed of the extent of activation and was similar to that of an isolated muscle. On the other hand, activation by the central nervous system during maximal effort depended on the speed and the type of muscle action performed.

  6. Application of Artificial Intelligence to the Prediction of the Antimicrobial Activity of Essential Oils.

    PubMed

    Daynac, Mathieu; Cortes-Cabrera, Alvaro; Prieto, Jose M

    2015-01-01

    Essential oils (EOs) are vastly used as natural antibiotics in Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM). Their intrinsic chemical variability and synergisms/antagonisms between its components make difficult to ensure consistent effects through different batches. Our aim is to evaluate the use of artificial neural networks (ANNs) for the prediction of their antimicrobial activity. Methods. The chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of 49 EOs, extracts, and/or fractions was extracted from NCCLS compliant works. The fast artificial neural networks (FANN) software was used and the output data reflected the antimicrobial activity of these EOs against four common pathogens: Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Candida albicans, and Clostridium perfringens as measured by standardised disk diffusion assays. Results. ANNs were able to predict >70% of the antimicrobial activities within a 10 mm maximum error range. Similarly, ANNs were able to predict 2 or 3 different bioactivities at the same time. The accuracy of the prediction was only limited by the inherent errors of the popular antimicrobial disk susceptibility test and the nature of the pathogens. Conclusions. ANNs can be reliable, fast, and cheap tools for the prediction of the antimicrobial activity of EOs thus improving their use in CAM.

  7. Application of Artificial Intelligence to the Prediction of the Antimicrobial Activity of Essential Oils

    PubMed Central

    Daynac, Mathieu; Cortes-Cabrera, Alvaro; Prieto, Jose M.

    2015-01-01

    Essential oils (EOs) are vastly used as natural antibiotics in Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM). Their intrinsic chemical variability and synergisms/antagonisms between its components make difficult to ensure consistent effects through different batches. Our aim is to evaluate the use of artificial neural networks (ANNs) for the prediction of their antimicrobial activity. Methods. The chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of 49 EOs, extracts, and/or fractions was extracted from NCCLS compliant works. The fast artificial neural networks (FANN) software was used and the output data reflected the antimicrobial activity of these EOs against four common pathogens: Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Candida albicans, and Clostridium perfringens as measured by standardised disk diffusion assays. Results. ANNs were able to predict >70% of the antimicrobial activities within a 10 mm maximum error range. Similarly, ANNs were able to predict 2 or 3 different bioactivities at the same time. The accuracy of the prediction was only limited by the inherent errors of the popular antimicrobial disk susceptibility test and the nature of the pathogens. Conclusions. ANNs can be reliable, fast, and cheap tools for the prediction of the antimicrobial activity of EOs thus improving their use in CAM. PMID:26457111

  8. Comparison of Hybrid Constructs with 2-Level Artificial Disc Replacement and 2-Level Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion for Surgical Reconstruction of the Cervical Spine: A Kinematic Study in Whole Cadavers

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Baoge; Zeng, Zheng; Van Hoof, Tom; Kalala, Jean Pierre; Liu, Zhenyu; Wu, Bingxuan

    2015-01-01

    Background Multi-level cervical degeneration of the spine is a common clinical pathology that is often repaired by anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). The aim of this study was to investigate the kinematics of the cervical spine after hybrid surgery compared with 2-level ACDF. Material/Methods Five freshly frozen, unembalmed whole human cadavers were used including 3 males and 2 females with a mean age of 51±8 years. After evaluating the intact spine for range of motion (ROM), sagittal alignment and instantaneous center of rotation (ICR), each cadaver underwent 4 consecutive surgeries: 2-level artificial disc replacement (ADR) from C4 to C6 (ADR surgery); 2-level ACDF from C4 to C6 (ACDF surgery); hybrid C4–5 ACDF and C5–6 ADR (ACDF+ADR surgery); and hybrid C4–5 ADR and C5–6 ACDF (ADR+ACDF surgery). The ROM and ICR of adjacent intact segments (C3–4; C6–7), and whole sagittal alignment were revaluated. Results Two-level ACDF resulted in increased ROM at C3–4 and C6–7 compared with intact spine. ROM was significantly different to intact spine using ACDF surgery at C3–C4 and C6–C7 and ROM was increased with ACDF+ADR surgery at C6–C7 (all P<0.05). No improvement in sagittal alignment was observed with any approach. The localization of the ICR shifted upwards and anteriorly at C3–C4 after reconstruction. ICR changes at C3–C4 were greatest for ADR+ACDF surgery and were significantly different to ACDF surgery (P<0.05), but not between ADR surgery and ACDF+ADR surgery. At C6–C7, the ICR was more posterior and superior than in the intact condition. The greatest change in ICR was observed in ACDF surgery at the C6–C7 level, significantly different from the other groups (P<0.05). Conclusions For 2-level reconstruction, hybrid surgery and ADR did not alter ROM and minimally changed ICR at the adjacent-level. The type of surgery had a significant impact on the ICR location. This suggests that hybrid surgery may be a viable option for 2

  9. Circadian factors BMAL1 and RORα control HIF-1α transcriptional activity in nucleus pulposus cells: implications in maintenance of intervertebral disc health

    PubMed Central

    Suyama, Kaori; Silagi, Elizabeth S.; Choi, Hyowon; Sakabe, Kou; Mochida, Joji; Shapiro, Irving M.; Risbud, Makarand V.

    2016-01-01

    BMAL1 and RORα are major regulators of the circadian molecular oscillator. Since previous work in other cell types has shown cross talk between circadian rhythm genes and hypoxic signaling, we investigated the role of BMAL1 and RORα in controlling HIF-1-dependent transcriptional responses in NP cells that exist in the physiologically hypoxic intervertebral disc. HIF-1-dependent HRE reporter activity was further promoted by co-transfection with either BMAL1 or RORα. In addition, stable silencing of BMAL1 or inhibition of RORα activity resulted in decreased HRE activation. Inhibition of RORα also modulated HIF1α-TAD activity. Interestingly, immunoprecipitation studies showed no evidence of BMAL1, CLOCK or RORα binding to HIF-1α in NP cells. Noteworthy, stable silencing of BMAL1 as well as inhibition of RORα decreased expression of select HIF-1 target genes including VEGF, PFKFB3 and Eno1. To delineate if BMAL1 plays a role in maintenance of disc health, we studied the spinal phenotype of BMAL1-null mice. The lumbar discs of null mice evidenced decreased height, and several parameters associated with vertebral trabecular bone quality were also affected in nulls. In addition, null animals showed a higher ratio of cells to matrix in NP tissue and hyperplasia of the annulus fibrosus. Taken together, our results indicate that BMAL1 and RORα form a regulatory loop in the NP and control HIF-1 activity without direct interaction. Importantly, activities of these circadian rhythm molecules may play a role in the adaptation of NP cells to their unique niche. PMID:27049729

  10. Crocin exerts anti-inflammatory and anti-catabolic effects on rat intervertebral discs by suppressing the activation of JNK

    PubMed Central

    LI, KANG; LI, YAN; MA, ZHENJIANG; ZHAO, JIE

    2015-01-01

    As intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration has been proven to contribute to low back pain (LBP), drug treatment aiming at attenuating IVD degeneration may prove to be benefiical. Crocin, a bioactive component of saffron, has been found to exert anti-inflammatory effects on cartilage. In the present study, the anti-inflammatory and anti-catabolic effects of crocin on rat IVDs were analyzed in vitro and ex vivo. Nucleus pulposus (NP) cells were isolated from the lumbar IVDs of Sprague-Dawley rats. The NP cells were first treated with various concentrations of crocin, and then stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) to induce inflammation. Subsequently, RT-qPCR and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay were carried out to measure the expression levels of catabolic enzymes, pro-inflammatory factors and the components of the extracellular matrix (ECM). In addition, western blot analysis was also used to investigate the related signaling pathways. The whole spinal motion segment (vertebra-IVD-vertebra section) of the rats was isolated and cultured in the presence or absence of LPS and crocin for 7 days. The ex vivo effects of crocin on the ECM of the IVD structures were determined by histological and biochemical analysis. In vitro, crocin significantly inhibited the LPS-induced overexpression of catabolic enzymes [matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-1, MMP-3, MMP-13, a disintegrin-like and metalloprotease (reprolysin type) with thrombospondin type 1 motif (ADAMTS)-4 and ADAMTS-5], pro-inflammatory factors [interleukin (IL)-1β, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, IL-6 and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS)] and Toll-like receptor (TLR)-2 in a concentration-dependent manner. Notably, crocin partly prevented the downregulation of aggrecan and type II collagen (collagen-II). Moreover, crocin suppressed the LPS-induced activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway by inhibiting the phosphorylation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK). Ex vivo experiments demonstrated

  11. Disc cell senescence in intervertebral disc degeneration: Causes and molecular pathways

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Chencheng; Liu, Huan; Yang, Minghui; Zhang, Yang; Huang, Bo; Zhou, Yue

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The accumulation of senescent disc cells in degenerative intervertebral disc (IVD) suggests the detrimental roles of cell senescence in the pathogenesis of intervertebral disc degeneration (IDD). Disc cell senescence decreased the number of functional cells in IVD. Moreover, the senescent disc cells were supposed to accelerate the process of IDD via their aberrant paracrine effects by which senescent cells cause the senescence of neighboring cells and enhance the matrix catabolism and inflammation in IVD. Thus, anti-senescence has been proposed as a novel therapeutic target for IDD. However, the development of anti-senescence therapy is based on our understanding of the molecular mechanism of disc cell senescence. In this review, we focused on the molecular mechanism of disc cell senescence, including the causes and various molecular pathways. We found that, during the process of IDD, age-related damages together with degenerative external stimuli activated both p53-p21-Rb and p16-Rb pathways to induce disc cell senescence. Meanwhile, disc cell senescence was regulated by multiple signaling pathways, suggesting the complex regulating network of disc cell senescence. To understand the mechanism of disc cell senescence better contributes to developing the anti-senescence-based therapies for IDD. PMID:27192096

  12. Artificial neural network and multiple regression model for nickel(II) adsorption on powdered activated carbons.

    PubMed

    Hema, M; Srinivasan, K

    2011-07-01

    Nickel removal efficiency of powered activated carbons of coconut oilcake, neem oilcake and commercial carbon was investigated by using artificial neural network. The effective parameters for the removal of nickel (%R) by adsorption process, which included the pH, contact time (T), distinctiveness of activated carbon (Cn), amount of activated carbon (Cw) and initial concentration of nickel (Co) were investigated. Levenberg-Marquardt (LM) Back-propagation algorithm is used to train the network. The network topology was optimized by varying number of hidden layer and number of neurons in hidden layer. The model was developed in terms of training; validation and testing of experimental data, the test subsets that each of them contains 60%, 20% and 20% of total experimental data, respectively. Multiple regression equation was developed for nickel adsorption system and the output was compared with both simulated and experimental outputs. Standard deviation (SD) with respect to experimental output was quite higher in the case of regression model when compared with ANN model. The obtained experimental data best fitted with the artificial neural network. PMID:23029923

  13. Measurement of the activity of an artificial neutrino source based on {sup 37}Ar

    SciTech Connect

    Abdurashitov, D. N.; Veretenkin, E. P.; Gavrin, V. N.; Gorbachev, V. V.; Ibragimova, T. V.; Kalikhov, A. V.; Mirmov, I. N. Shikhin, A. A.; Yants, V. E.; Barsanov, V. I.; Dzhanelidze, A. A.; Zlokazov, S. B.; Markov, S. Yu.; Shakirov, Z. N.; Cleveland, B. T.

    2007-02-15

    The activity of an artificial neutrino source based on {sup 37}Ar was measured by a specially developed method of directly counting {sup 37}Ar decays in a proportional counter. This source was used to irradiate the target of the SAGE radiochemical gallium-germanium neutrino telescope at the Baksan Neutrino Observatory (Institute for Nuclear Research, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow), whereupon the measurements were performed at the Institute of Reactor Materials (Zarechny, Sverdlovsk oblast, Russia). The method used to prepare gaseous samples for measurements in proportional counters and the counting procedure are described. The measured activity of the {sup 37}Ar neutrino source is 405.1 {+-} 3.7 kCi (corrected for decays that occurred within the period between the instant of activity measurement and the commencement of the irradiation of Ga target at 04:00 Moscow time, 30.04.2004)

  14. Janus particles as artificial antigen-presenting cells for T cell activation.

    PubMed

    Chen, Bo; Jia, Yilong; Gao, Yuan; Sanchez, Lucero; Anthony, Stephen M; Yu, Yan

    2014-01-01

    Here we show that the multifunctionality of Janus particles can be exploited for in vitro T cell activation. We engineer bifunctional Janus particles on which the spatial distribution of two ligands, anti-CD3 and fibronectin, mimics the "bull's eye" protein pattern formed in the membrane junction between a T cell and an antigen-presenting cell. Different levels of T cell activation can be achieved by simply switching the spatial distribution of the two ligands on the surfaces of the "bull's eye" particles. We find that the ligand pattern also affects clustering of intracellular proteins. This study demonstrates that anisotropic particles, such as Janus particles, can be developed as artificial antigen-presenting cells for modulating T cell activation. PMID:25343426

  15. Turbine disc sealing assembly

    DOEpatents

    Diakunchak, Ihor S.

    2013-03-05

    A disc seal assembly for use in a turbine engine. The disc seal assembly includes a plurality of outwardly extending sealing flange members that define a plurality of fluid pockets. The sealing flange members define a labyrinth flow path therebetween to limit leakage between a hot gas path and a disc cavity in the turbine engine.

  16. Active Path Selection of Fluid Microcapsules in Artificial Blood Vessel by Acoustic Radiation Force

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Masuda, Kohji; Muramatsu, Yusuke; Ueda, Sawami; Nakamoto, Ryusuke; Nakayashiki, Yusuke; Ishihara, Ken

    2009-07-01

    Micrometer-sized microcapsules collapse upon exposure to ultrasound. Use of this phenomenon for a drug delivery system (DDS), not only for local delivery of medication but also for gene therapy, should be possible. However, enhancing the efficiency of medication is limited because capsules in suspension diffuse in the human body after injection, since the motion of capsules in blood flow cannot be controlled. To control the behavior of microcapsules, acoustic radiation force was introduced. We detected local changes in microcapsule density by producing acoustic radiation force in an artificial blood vessel. Furthermore, we theoretically estimated the conditions required for active path selection of capsules at a bifurcation point in the artificial blood vessel. We observed the difference in capsule density at both in the bifurcation point and in alternative paths downstream of the bifurcation point for different acoustic radiation forces. Comparing the experimental results with those obtained theoretically, the conditions for active path selection were calculated from the acoustic radiation force and fluid resistance of the capsules. The possibility of controlling capsule flow towards a specific point in a blood vessel was demonstrated.

  17. Ligand Biological Activity Predictions Using Fingerprint-Based Artificial Neural Networks (FANN-QSAR)

    PubMed Central

    Myint, Kyaw Z.; Xie, Xiang-Qun

    2015-01-01

    This chapter focuses on the fingerprint-based artificial neural networks QSAR (FANN-QSAR) approach to predict biological activities of structurally diverse compounds. Three types of fingerprints, namely ECFP6, FP2, and MACCS, were used as inputs to train the FANN-QSAR models. The results were benchmarked against known 2D and 3D QSAR methods, and the derived models were used to predict cannabinoid (CB) ligand binding activities as a case study. In addition, the FANN-QSAR model was used as a virtual screening tool to search a large NCI compound database for lead cannabinoid compounds. We discovered several compounds with good CB2 binding affinities ranging from 6.70 nM to 3.75 μM. The studies proved that the FANN-QSAR method is a useful approach to predict bioactivities or properties of ligands and to find novel lead compounds for drug discovery research. PMID:25502380

  18. Anti-glycated activity prediction of polysaccharides from two guava fruits using artificial neural networks.

    PubMed

    Yan, Chunyan; Lee, Jinsheng; Kong, Fansheng; Zhang, Dezhi

    2013-10-15

    High-efficiency ultrasonic treatment was used to extract the polysaccharides of Psidium guajava (PPG) and Psidium littorale (PPL). The aims of this study were to compare polysaccharide activities from these two guavas, as well as to investigate the relationship between ultrasonic conditions and anti-glycated activity. A mathematical model of anti-glycated activity was constructed with the artificial neural network (ANN) toolbox of MATLAB software. Response surface plots showed the correlation between ultrasonic conditions and bioactivity. The optimal ultrasonic conditions of PPL for the highest anti-glycated activity were predicted to be 256 W, 60 °C, and 12 min, and the predicted activity was 42.2%. The predicted highest anti-glycated activity of PPG was 27.2% under its optimal predicted ultrasonic condition. The experimental result showed that PPG and PPL possessed anti-glycated and antioxidant activities, and those of PPL were greater. The experimental data also indicated that ANN had good prediction and optimization capability.

  19. Optical Disc Applications in Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andre, Pamela Q. J.

    1989-01-01

    Discusses a variety of library applications of optical disc storage technology, including CD-ROM, digital videodisc, and WORM. Research and development projects at the Library of Congress, National Library of Medicine, and National Agricultural Library are described, products offered by library networks are reviewed, and activities in academic and…

  20. Activity patterns during food provisioning are affected by artificial light in free living great tits (Parus major).

    PubMed

    Titulaer, Mieke; Spoelstra, Kamiel; Lange, Cynthia Y M J G; Visser, Marcel E

    2012-01-01

    Artificial light may have severe ecological consequences but there is limited experimental work to assess these consequences. We carried out an experimental study on a wild population of great tits (Parus major) to assess the impact of light pollution on daily activity patterns during the chick provisioning period. Pairs that were provided with a small light outside their nest box did not alter the onset, cessation or duration of their working day. There was however a clear effect of artificial light on the feeding rate in the second half of the nestling period: when provided with artificial light females increased their feeding rate when the nestlings were between 9 and 16 days old. Artificial light is hypothesised to have affected the perceived photoperiod of either the parents or the offspring which in turn led to increased parental care. This may have negative fitness consequences for the parents, and light pollution may thus create an ecological trap for breeding birds.

  1. Theory of Black Hole Accretion Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abramowicz, Marek A.; Björnsson, Gunnlaugur; Pringle, James E.

    1999-03-01

    Part I. Observations of Black Holes: 1. Black holes in our Galaxy: observations P. Charles; 2. Black holes in Active Galactic Nuclei: observations G. M. Madejski; Part II. Physics Close to a Black Hole: 3. Physics of black holes I. D. Novikov; 4. Physics of black hole accretion M. A. Abramowicz; Part III. Turbulence, Viscosity: 5. Disc turbulence and viscosity A. Brandenburg; Part IV. Radiative Processes: 6. The role of electron-positron pairs in accretion flows G. Björnsson; 7. Accretion disc-corona models and X/Y-ray spectra of accreting black holes J. Poutanen; 8. Emission lines: signatures of relativistic rotation A. C. Fabian; Part V. Accretion Discs: 9. Spectral tests of models for accretion disks around black holes J. H. Krolik; 10. Advection-dominated accretion around black holes R. Narayan, R. Mahadevan and E. Quataert; 11. Accretion disc instabilities and advection dominated accretion flows J.-P. Lasota; 12. Magnetic field and multi-phase gas in AGN A. Celotti and M. J. Rees; Part V. Discs in Binary Black Holes: 13. Supermassive binary black holes in galaxies P. Artymowicz; Part VI. Stability of Accretion Discs: 14. Large scale perturbation of an accretion disc by a black hole binary companion J. C. B. Papaloizou, C. Terquem and D. N. C. Lin; 15. Stable oscillations of black hole accretion discs M. Nowak and D. Lehr; Part VI. Coherant Structures: 16. Spotted discs A. Bracco, A. Provenzale, E. A. Spiegel and P. Yecko; Self-organized critically in accretion discs P. Wiita and Y. Xiong; Summary: old and new advances in black hole accretion disc theory R. Svensson.

  2. Theory of Black Hole Accretion Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abramowicz, Marek A.; Björnsson, Gunnlaugur; Pringle, James E.

    2010-08-01

    Part I. Observations of Black Holes: 1. Black holes in our Galaxy: observations P. Charles; 2. Black holes in Active Galactic Nuclei: observations G. M. Madejski; Part II. Physics Close to a Black Hole: 3. Physics of black holes I. D. Novikov; 4. Physics of black hole accretion M. A. Abramowicz; Part III. Turbulence, Viscosity: 5. Disc turbulence and viscosity A. Brandenburg; Part IV. Radiative Processes: 6. The role of electron-positron pairs in accretion flows G. Björnsson; 7. Accretion disc-corona models and X/Y-ray spectra of accreting black holes J. Poutanen; 8. Emission lines: signatures of relativistic rotation A. C. Fabian; Part V. Accretion Discs: 9. Spectral tests of models for accretion disks around black holes J. H. Krolik; 10. Advection-dominated accretion around black holes R. Narayan, R. Mahadevan and E. Quataert; 11. Accretion disc instabilities and advection dominated accretion flows J.-P. Lasota; 12. Magnetic field and multi-phase gas in AGN A. Celotti and M. J. Rees; Part V. Discs in Binary Black Holes: 13. Supermassive binary black holes in galaxies P. Artymowicz; Part VI. Stability of Accretion Discs: 14. Large scale perturbation of an accretion disc by a black hole binary companion J. C. B. Papaloizou, C. Terquem and D. N. C. Lin; 15. Stable oscillations of black hole accretion discs M. Nowak and D. Lehr; Part VI. Coherant Structures: 16. Spotted discs A. Bracco, A. Provenzale, E. A. Spiegel and P. Yecko; Self-organized critically in accretion discs P. Wiita and Y. Xiong; Summary: old and new advances in black hole accretion disc theory R. Svensson.

  3. The Effect of GCSB-5 a New Herbal Medicine on Changes in Pain Behavior and Neuroglial Activation in a Rat Model of Lumbar Disc Herniation

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Hee Kyung; Kim, So-Yeon; Choi, Mi Jung; Baek, Seung Ok; Kwak, Sang Gyu

    2016-01-01

    Objective Lumbar disc herniation can induce sciatica by mechanical compression and/or chemical irritation. The aim of this study was to compare the effects of GCSB-5 (Shinbaro®) and NSAIDs on pain-related behavior and on the expressions of microglia, astrocytes, CGRP, TRPV1, IL-6, and CX3CL1 in a rat model of lumbar disc herniation. Methods 112 male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent implantation of nucleus pulposus to a dorsal root ganglion (DRG). Rats were divided into five groups as follows; a saline group (the vehicle control group) (n=27), a 10 mg/kg aceclofenac group (the aceclofenac group) (n=22), and 100, 300 or 600 mg/kg GCSB-5 groups (the GCSB-5 100, 300, or 600 groups) (n=21 for each group). Rats were tested for mechanical allodynia at 3 days after surgery and at 1 day, 3 days, 7 days, 14 days, 21 days, 28 days, 35 days, 42 days, 49 days, and 56 days after treatment commencement. Immunohistochemical staining of microglia (Iba1), astrocytes (GFAP), CGRP, and TRPV1, and PCR for IL-6 and CX3CL1 were performed on spinal dorsal horns and DRGs at 56 days after medication commencement. Results After 56 days of GCSB-5 300 administration, mechanical withdrawal thresholds were significantly increased (p<0.05), and immunohisto-chemical expressions of Iba1, GFAP, CGRP, and TRPV1 were reduced than other groups, but this difference was not statistically significant. Conclusion These results indicate GCSB-5 reduces mechanical allodynia and downregulates neuroglial activity and the expressions of CGRP and TRPV1 in the spinal segments of a rat model of lumbar disc herniation. PMID:26962414

  4. Active Experiments on Artificial Air Ionization to Check the Physical Mechanism of Air Electrification by Radon in Seismically Active Area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pulinets, S. A.; Pokhmelnykh, L. A.; Domingues, M.; Bisiacchi, G.

    2005-05-01

    The air ionization in troposphere leads to formation of the large charged clusters of the aerosol size due to water molecules attachment to the new formed ions. This process have several consequences leading to the changes of the air conductivity, formation of large scale space charges and large scale electric field, changes of the air temperature and relative humidity. All these effects were observed experimentally within the interval of two weeks before the strong earthquakes such as Colima earthquake in Mexico (M7.8) on 22 of January 2003 or Parkfield earthquake in USA (M6) on 28 of September 2004. In the case of earthquakes the atmosphere electricity modification is ascribed to the radon ionization and the effects are calculated within the frame of the seismo-ionosphere coupling model. But there are very few systematic sources of the radon monitoring, so the real check of the model is better possible within the frame of the controlled active experiment. Such experiments of the artificial ionization were conducted in Mexico using the large wire antennas producing the air ionization by applying the large electric potential (~ 40 kV) to the elevated circular thin wire of ~ 100 m diameter. It was demonstrated that such impact on the atmosphere can create the effects of the meteorological scale producing the artificial clouds (and rains), and even modify the large scale atmospheric formations as typhoons. Results of the theoretical estimations and active experiments will be demonstrated.

  5. Gender specific changes in cortical activation patterns during exposure to artificial gravity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneider, Stefan; Robinson, Ryan; Smith, Craig; von der Wiesche, Melanie; Goswami, Nandu

    2014-11-01

    Keeping astronauts healthy during long duration spaceflight remains a challenge. Artificial gravity (AG) generated by a short arm human centrifuges (SAHC) is proposed as the next generation of integrated countermeasure devices that will allow human beings to safely spend extended durations in space, although comparatively little is known about any psychological side effects of AG on brain function. 16 participants (8 male and 8 female, GENDER) were exposed to 10 min at a baseline gravitational load (G-Load) of +.03 Gz, then 10 min at +.6 Gz for females and +.8 Gz for males, before being exposed to increasing levels of AG in a stepped manner by increasing the acceleration by +.1 Gz every 3 min until showing signs of pre-syncope. EEG recordings were taken of brain activity during 2 min time periods at each AG level. Analysing the results of the mixed total population of participants by two way ANOVA, a significant effect of centrifugation on alpha and beta activity was found (p<.01). Furthermore results revealed a significant interaction between G-LOAD and GENDER alpha-activity (p<.01), but not for beta-activity. Although the increase in alpha and beta activity with G-LOAD does not reflect a general model of cortical arousal and therefore cannot support previous findings reporting that AG may be a cognitively arousing environment, the gender specific responses identified in this study may have wider implications for EEG and AG research.

  6. Blu-ray Technology-Based Quantitative Assays for Cardiac Markers: From Disc Activation to Multiplex Detection.

    PubMed

    Weng, Samuel; Li, Xiaochun; Niu, Michelle; Ge, Bixia; Yu, Hua-Zhong

    2016-07-01

    Acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is the leading cause of mortality and morbidity globally. To reduce the number of mortalities, reliable and rapid point-of-care (POC) diagnosis of AMI is extremely critical. We herein present a Blu-ray technology-based assay platform for multiplex cardiac biomarker detection; not only off-the-shelf Blu-ray discs (BDs) were adapted as substrates to prepare standard immunoassays and DNA aptamer/antibody hybrid assays for the three key cardiac marker proteins (myoglobin, troponin I, and C-creative protein) but also an unmodified optical drive was directly employed to read the assay results digitally. In particular, we have shown that all three cardiac markers can be quantitated in their respective physiological ranges of interest, and the detection limits achieved are comparable with conventional enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kits. The Blu-ray assay platform was further validated by measuring real-world samples and establishing a linear correlation with the simultaneously obtained ELISA data. Without the need to modify either the hardware (Blu-ray discs and optical drives) or the software driver, this assay-on-a-BD technique promises to be a low-cost user-friendly quantitative tool for on-site chemical analysis and POC medical diagnosis.

  7. Blu-ray Technology-Based Quantitative Assays for Cardiac Markers: From Disc Activation to Multiplex Detection.

    PubMed

    Weng, Samuel; Li, Xiaochun; Niu, Michelle; Ge, Bixia; Yu, Hua-Zhong

    2016-07-01

    Acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is the leading cause of mortality and morbidity globally. To reduce the number of mortalities, reliable and rapid point-of-care (POC) diagnosis of AMI is extremely critical. We herein present a Blu-ray technology-based assay platform for multiplex cardiac biomarker detection; not only off-the-shelf Blu-ray discs (BDs) were adapted as substrates to prepare standard immunoassays and DNA aptamer/antibody hybrid assays for the three key cardiac marker proteins (myoglobin, troponin I, and C-creative protein) but also an unmodified optical drive was directly employed to read the assay results digitally. In particular, we have shown that all three cardiac markers can be quantitated in their respective physiological ranges of interest, and the detection limits achieved are comparable with conventional enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kits. The Blu-ray assay platform was further validated by measuring real-world samples and establishing a linear correlation with the simultaneously obtained ELISA data. Without the need to modify either the hardware (Blu-ray discs and optical drives) or the software driver, this assay-on-a-BD technique promises to be a low-cost user-friendly quantitative tool for on-site chemical analysis and POC medical diagnosis. PMID:27268387

  8. Determination of DPPH free radical scavenging activity: application of artificial neural networks.

    PubMed

    Musa, Khalid Hamid; Abdullah, Aminah; Al-Haiqi, Ahmed

    2016-03-01

    A new computational approach for the determination of 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl free radical scavenging activity (DPPH-RSA) in food is reported, based on the concept of machine learning. Trolox standard was mix with DPPH at different concentrations to produce different colors from purple to yellow. Artificial neural network (ANN) was trained on a typical set of images of the DPPH radical reacting with different levels of Trolox. This allowed the neural network to classify future images of any sample into the correct class of RSA level. The ANN was then able to determine the DPPH-RSA of cinnamon, clove, mung bean, red bean, red rice, brown rice, black rice and tea extract and the results were compared with data obtained using a spectrophotometer. The application of ANN correlated well to the spectrophotometric classical procedure and thus do not require the use of spectrophotometer, and it could be used to obtain semi-quantitative results of DPPH-RSA.

  9. Production and removal of superoxide anion radical by artificial metalloenzymes and redox-active metals

    PubMed Central

    Kawano, Tomonori; Kagenishi, Tomoko; Kadono, Takashi; Bouteau, François; Hiramatsu, Takuya; Lin, Cun; Tanaka, Kenichiro; Tanaka, Licca; Mancuso, Stefano; Uezu, Kazuya; Okobira, Tadashi; Furukawa, Hiroka; Iwase, Junichiro; Inokuchi, Reina; Baluška, Frantisek; Yokawa, Ken

    2015-01-01

    Generation of reactive oxygen species is useful for various medical, engineering and agricultural purposes. These include clinical modulation of immunological mechanism, enhanced degradation of organic compounds released to the environments, removal of microorganisms for the hygienic purpose, and agricultural pest control; both directly acting against pathogenic microorganisms and indirectly via stimulation of plant defense mechanism represented by systemic acquired resistance and hypersensitive response. By aiming to develop a novel classes of artificial redox-active biocatalysts involved in production and/or removal of superoxide anion radicals, recent attempts for understanding and modification of natural catalytic proteins and functional DNA sequences of mammalian and plant origins are covered in this review article. PMID:27066179

  10. Production and removal of superoxide anion radical by artificial metalloenzymes and redox-active metals.

    PubMed

    Kawano, Tomonori; Kagenishi, Tomoko; Kadono, Takashi; Bouteau, François; Hiramatsu, Takuya; Lin, Cun; Tanaka, Kenichiro; Tanaka, Licca; Mancuso, Stefano; Uezu, Kazuya; Okobira, Tadashi; Furukawa, Hiroka; Iwase, Junichiro; Inokuchi, Reina; Baluška, Frantisek; Yokawa, Ken

    2015-01-01

    Generation of reactive oxygen species is useful for various medical, engineering and agricultural purposes. These include clinical modulation of immunological mechanism, enhanced degradation of organic compounds released to the environments, removal of microorganisms for the hygienic purpose, and agricultural pest control; both directly acting against pathogenic microorganisms and indirectly via stimulation of plant defense mechanism represented by systemic acquired resistance and hypersensitive response. By aiming to develop a novel classes of artificial redox-active biocatalysts involved in production and/or removal of superoxide anion radicals, recent attempts for understanding and modification of natural catalytic proteins and functional DNA sequences of mammalian and plant origins are covered in this review article. PMID:27066179

  11. Classification of Physical Activity: Information to Artificial Pancreas Control Systems in Real Time.

    PubMed

    Turksoy, Kamuran; Paulino, Thiago Marques Luz; Zaharieva, Dessi P; Yavelberg, Loren; Jamnik, Veronica; Riddell, Michael C; Cinar, Ali

    2015-11-01

    Physical activity has a wide range of effects on glucose concentrations in type 1 diabetes (T1D) depending on the type (ie, aerobic, anaerobic, mixed) and duration of activity performed. This variability in glucose responses to physical activity makes the development of artificial pancreas (AP) systems challenging. Automatic detection of exercise type and intensity, and its classification as aerobic or anaerobic would provide valuable information to AP control algorithms. This can be achieved by using a multivariable AP approach where biometric variables are measured and reported to the AP at high frequency. We developed a classification system that identifies, in real time, the exercise intensity and its reliance on aerobic or anaerobic metabolism and tested this approach using clinical data collected from 5 persons with T1D and 3 individuals without T1D in a controlled laboratory setting using a variety of common types of physical activity. The classifier had an average sensitivity of 98.7% for physiological data collected over a range of exercise modalities and intensities in these subjects. The classifier will be added as a new module to the integrated multivariable adaptive AP system to enable the detection of aerobic and anaerobic exercise for enhancing the accuracy of insulin infusion strategies during and after exercise.

  12. Computer disc revolution.

    PubMed

    Nunnally, R H

    1994-05-01

    CD-ROM Computer Discs with read only memory are etched in polycarbonate discs that permit storage of up to 400,000 pages on a single disc. Use of this technology supplemented by access to the National Library of Medicine or a large information service brings the medical library to the rural physician's office. This allows pertinent journal information to be applied to day-to-day office practice. PMID:8034564

  13. [Studies on construction of artificial mutants of Cucumber mosaic virus satellite RNA and their biological activity].

    PubMed

    Jin, Bo; Chen, Ji-Shuang; Zhang, Hua-Rong

    2005-08-01

    Based on the full length cDNA clone of a Cucumber mosaic virus satellite RNA, which was 369nt in size, artificial mutants were developed by the method of error-prone PCR and DNA shuffling. The new satellite cDNAs were transcribed in vitro into ssRNA and pseudo-recombined with a helper Cucumber mosaic virus, which contains no satellite RNA. Sequence analysis showed that A to T/G or G to A replacement all the four mutants, named MS1, MS5, MS6 and MS11 respectively, and there is no C to G or G to C replacement, but amongst, only the mutants MS11 could replicated when recombined with the helper virus strain. No satellite RNA could be detected by RT-PCR amplification and double-stranded RNA analysis for those pseudo-recombination constitution of Cucumber mosaic virus strain with mutants MS1, MS5 and MS6.Sequence homological comparison showed that the single replacement of mutants MS1, MS5 and MS6 occurred in the highly conservative regions and the T to A replacement of mutant MS11 was located in the normal-variation region. This is the first artificial mutation of satellite RNA of plant RNA viruses. The results indicated that single base in the region of satellite RNA maybe important to maintaining the biological activity of satellite RNA for its replication and stability. The variation and evolution of satellite RNA could be hopefully studied through combination directed evolution by DNA shuffling with pseudo-recombination in vitro.

  14. Artificial Warming and Rain Addition Increase Phenol Oxidase Activity in Arctic Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kang, H.; Seo, J.; Jang, I.; Lee, Y. K.

    2014-12-01

    Artic tundra is one of the largest carbon stocks, of which amount is estimated up to 1,600 Pg. Global climate change models predict surface temperature rise and higher precipitation during summer in Arctic regions, raising concerns about faster decomposition of organic carbon and consequent releases of CO2, CH4 and DOC. Microorganisms are directly involved in decomposition process by releasing various extracellular enzymes. In particular, phenol oxidase was noted to play a key role because it is related to dynamics of highly recalcitrant carbon, which often represents a rate-limiting step of overall decomposition. In this study, we monitored phenol oxidase activity, hydrolases (β-glucosidase, cellobiohydrolase, N-acetylglucosaminidase and aminopeptidase), microbial abundance (qPCR) and chemical properties (δ13C and δ15N signatures) of tundra soils exposed to artificial warming and rain addition, by employing a passive chamber method in Cambridge Bay, Canada. Warming and rain addition combinedly increased phenol oxidase activity while no such changes were discernible for other hydrolases. Stable isotope signature indicates that warming induced water stress to the ecosystem and that nitrogen availability may be enhanced, which is partially responsible for the changes in enzyme activities. A short-term warming (2 years) may not accelerate mineralization of easily decomposable carbon, but may affect phenol oxidase which has the longer-term influence on recalcitrant carbon.

  15. Hemoglobin–Albumin Cluster Incorporating a Pt Nanoparticle: Artificial O2 Carrier with Antioxidant Activities

    PubMed Central

    Hosaka, Hitomi; Haruki, Risa; Yamada, Kana; Böttcher, Christoph; Komatsu, Teruyuki

    2014-01-01

    A covalent core–shell structured protein cluster composed of hemoglobin (Hb) at the center and human serum albumins (HSA) at the periphery, Hb-HSAm, is an artificial O2 carrier that can function as a red blood cell substitute. Here we described the preparation of a novel Hb-HSA3 cluster with antioxidant activities and its O2 complex stable in aqueous H2O2 solution. We used an approach of incorporating a Pt nanoparticle (PtNP) into the exterior HSA unit of the cluster. A citrate reduced PtNP (1.8 nm diameter) was bound tightly within the cleft of free HSA with a binding constant (K) of 1.1×107 M−1, generating a stable HSA-PtNP complex. This platinated protein showed high catalytic activities for dismutations of superoxide radical anions (O2•–) and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), i.e., superoxide dismutase and catalase activities. Also, Hb-HSA3 captured PtNP into the external albumin unit (K = 1.1×107 M−1), yielding an Hb-HSA3(PtNP) cluster. The association of PtNP caused no alteration of the protein surface net charge and O2 binding affinity. The peripheral HSA-PtNP shell prevents oxidation of the core Hb, which enables the formation of an extremely stable O2 complex, even in H2O2 solution. PMID:25310133

  16. Particle shape dependence of CD8+ T cell activation by artificial antigen presenting cells.

    PubMed

    Sunshine, Joel C; Perica, Karlo; Schneck, Jonathan P; Green, Jordan J

    2014-01-01

    Previous work developing particle-based acellular, artificial antigen presenting cells (aAPCs) has focused exclusively on spherical platforms. To explore the role of shape, we generated ellipsoidal PLGA microparticles with varying aspect ratios (ARs) and synthesized aAPCs from them. The ellipsoidal biomimetic aAPCs with high-AR showed significantly enhanced in vitro and in vivo activity above spherical aAPCs with particle volume and antigen content held constant. Confocal imaging indicates that CD8+ T cells preferentially migrate to and are activated by interaction with the long axis of the aAPC. Importantly, enhanced activity of high-AR aAPCs was seen in a mouse melanoma model, with high-AR aAPCs improving melanoma survival compared to non-cognate aAPCs (p = 0.004) and cognate spherical aAPCs (p = 0.05). These findings indicate that particle geometry is a critical design criterion in the generation of aAPCs, and may offer insight into the essential role of geometry in the interaction between CD8+ T cells and biological APCs. PMID:24099710

  17. Improving quantitative structure-activity relationship models using Artificial Neural Networks trained with dropout.

    PubMed

    Mendenhall, Jeffrey; Meiler, Jens

    2016-02-01

    Dropout is an Artificial Neural Network (ANN) training technique that has been shown to improve ANN performance across canonical machine learning (ML) datasets. Quantitative Structure Activity Relationship (QSAR) datasets used to relate chemical structure to biological activity in Ligand-Based Computer-Aided Drug Discovery pose unique challenges for ML techniques, such as heavily biased dataset composition, and relatively large number of descriptors relative to the number of actives. To test the hypothesis that dropout also improves QSAR ANNs, we conduct a benchmark on nine large QSAR datasets. Use of dropout improved both enrichment false positive rate and log-scaled area under the receiver-operating characteristic curve (logAUC) by 22-46 % over conventional ANN implementations. Optimal dropout rates are found to be a function of the signal-to-noise ratio of the descriptor set, and relatively independent of the dataset. Dropout ANNs with 2D and 3D autocorrelation descriptors outperform conventional ANNs as well as optimized fingerprint similarity search methods.

  18. Artificial neural network optimization of Althaea rosea seeds polysaccharides and its antioxidant activity.

    PubMed

    Liu, Feng; Liu, Wenhui; Tian, Shuge

    2014-09-01

    A combination of an orthogonal L16(4)4 test design and a three-layer artificial neural network (ANN) model was applied to optimize polysaccharides from Althaea rosea seeds extracted by hot water method. The highest optimal experimental yield of A. rosea seed polysaccharides (ARSPs) of 59.85 mg/g was obtained using three extraction numbers, 113 min extraction time, 60.0% ethanol concentration, and 1:41 solid-liquid ratio. Under these optimized conditions, the ARSP experimental yield was very close to the predicted yield of 60.07 mg/g and was higher than the orthogonal test results (40.86 mg/g). Structural characterizations were conducted using physicochemical property and FTIR analysis. In addition, the study of ARSP antioxidant activity demonstrated that polysaccharides exhibited high superoxide dismutase activity, strong reducing power, and positive scavenging activity on superoxide anion, hydroxyl radical, 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl, and reducing power. Our results indicated that ANNs were efficient quantitative tools for predicting the total ARSP content.

  19. Design concepts in lumbar total disc arthroplasty

    PubMed Central

    Bellini, Chiara M.; Zweig, Thomas; Ferguson, Stephen; Raimondi, Manuela T.; Lamartina, Claudio; Brayda-Bruno, Marco; Fornari, Maurizio

    2008-01-01

    The implantation of lumbar disc prostheses based on different design concepts is widely accepted. This paper reviews currently available literature studies on the biomechanics of TDA in the lumbar spine, and is targeted at the evaluation of possible relationships between the aims of TDA and the geometrical, mechanical and material properties of the various available disc prostheses. Both theoretical and experimental studies were analyzed, by a PUBMED search (performed in February 2007, revised in January 2008), focusing on single level TDA. Both semi-constrained and unconstrained lumbar discs seem to be able to restore nearly physiological IAR locations and ROM values. However, both increased and decreased ROM was stated in some papers, unrelated to the clinical outcome. Segmental lordosis alterations after TDA were reported in most cases, for both constrained and unconstrained disc prostheses. An increase in the load through the facet joints was documented, for both semi-constrained and unconstrained artificial discs, but with some contrasting results. Semi-constrained devices may be able to share a greater part of the load, thus protecting the surrounding biological structure from overloading and possible early degeneration, but may be more susceptible to wear. The next level of development will be the biomechanical integration of compression across the motion segment. All these findings need to be supported by long-term clinical outcome studies. PMID:18946684

  20. Artificial sweeteners and salts producing a metallic taste sensation activate TRPV1 receptors.

    PubMed

    Riera, Céline E; Vogel, Horst; Simon, Sidney A; le Coutre, Johannes

    2007-08-01

    Throughout the world many people use artificial sweeteners (AS) for the purpose of reducing caloric intake. The most prominently used of these molecules include saccharin, aspartame (Nutrasweet), acesulfame-K, and cyclamate. Despite the caloric advantage they provide, one key concern in their use is their aversive aftertaste that has been characterized on a sensory level as bitter and/or metallic. Recently, it has been shown that the activation of particular T2R bitter taste receptors is partially involved with the bitter aftertaste sensation of saccharin and acesulfame-K. To more fully understand the biology behind these phenomena we have addressed the question of whether AS could stimulate transient receptor potential vanilloid-1 (TRPV1) receptors, as these receptors are activated by a large range of structurally different chemicals. Moreover, TRPV1 receptors and/or their variants are found in taste receptor cells and in nerve terminals throughout the oral cavity. Hence, TRPV1 activation could be involved in the AS aftertaste or even contribute to the poorly understood metallic taste sensation. Using Ca(2+) imaging on TRPV1 receptors heterologously expressed in the human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells and on dissociated primary sensory neurons, we find that in both systems, AS activate TRPV1 receptors, and, moreover, they sensitize these channels to acid and heat. We also found that TRPV1 receptors are activated by CuSO(4), ZnSO(4), and FeSO(4), three salts known to produce a metallic taste sensation. In summary, our results identify a novel group of compounds that activate TRPV1 and, consequently, provide a molecular mechanism that may account for off tastes of sweeteners and metallic tasting salts.

  1. Design of Surface-Active Artificial Enzyme Particles to Stabilize Pickering Emulsions for High-Performance Biphasic Biocatalysis.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhaowei; Zhao, Chuanqi; Ju, Enguo; Ji, Haiwei; Ren, Jinsong; Binks, Bernard P; Qu, Xiaogang

    2016-02-24

    Surface-active artificial enzymes (SAEs) are designed and constructed by a general and novel strategy. These SAEs can simultaneously stabilize Pickering emulsions and catalyze biphasic biotransformation with superior enzymatic stability and good re-usability; for example, for the interfacial conversion of hydrophobic p-nitrophenyl butyrate into yellow water-soluble p-nitrophenolate catalyzed by esterase-mimic SAE.

  2. An artificial HSE promoter for efficient and selective detection of heat shock pathway activity.

    PubMed

    Ortner, Viktoria; Ludwig, Alfred; Riegel, Elisabeth; Dunzinger, Sarah; Czerny, Thomas

    2015-03-01

    Detection of cellular stress is of major importance for the survival of cells. During evolution, a network of stress pathways developed, with the heat shock (HS) response playing a major role. The key transcription factor mediating HS signalling activity in mammalian cells is the HS factor HSF1. When activated it binds to the heat shock elements (HSE) in the promoters of target genes like heat shock protein (HSP) genes. They are induced by HSF1 but in addition they integrate multiple signals from different stress pathways. Here, we developed an artificial promoter consisting only of HSEs and therefore selectively reacting to HSF-mediated pathway activation. The promoter is highly inducible but has an extreme low basal level. Direct comparison with the HSPA1A promoter activity indicates that heat-dependent expression can be fully recapitulated by isolated HSEs in human cells. Using this sensitive reporter, we measured the HS response for different temperatures and exposure times. In particular, long heat induction times of 1 or 2 h were compared with short heat durations down to 1 min, conditions typical for burn injuries. We found similar responses to both long and short heat durations but at completely different temperatures. Exposure times of 2 h result in pathway activation at 41 to 44 °C, whereas heat pulses of 1 min lead to a maximum HS response between 47 and 50 °C. The results suggest that the HS response is initiated by a combination of temperature and exposure time but not by a certain threshold temperature.

  3. The benefit of artificial oocyte activation is dependent on the fertilization rate in a previous treatment cycle.

    PubMed

    Montag, Markus; Köster, Maria; van der Ven, Katrin; Bohlen, Ulrike; van der Ven, Hans

    2012-05-01

    Following intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), some patients present low or zero fertilization rates. Artificial oocyte activation has been proposed as a suitable means to overcome this problem. This study applied artificial oocyte activation in patient cohorts with a history of no fertilization (0%, group 1), fertilization between 1 and 29% (group 2) or fertilization between 30 and 50% (group 3) in initial ICSI cycles. In the following treatment cycles, oocytes were activated after ICSI using calcium ionophore. Fertilization, pregnancy and take-home baby rates were compared with the previous cycle without activation. In group 1, fertilization rate was 41.6%, embryos for transfer were available in 82.1% of cycles, giving a clinical pregnancy rate of 18.8% and take-home baby rate of 12.8%. In group 2, despite a lower transfer rate (87.9% versus 100%, P<0.05), there were higher fertilization and clinical pregnancy rates (44.4% versus 19.3% and 31.4% versus 12.8%, respectively, P<0.05) and take-home baby rate was 24.1% versus 12.8%. In group 3, fertilization rates differed (56.1% versus 36.8%; P<0.001) but all other parameters were similar. Artificial oocyte activation has great potential especially in patients showing compromised fertilization rates below 30% after standard ICSI. Following intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), some patients present very low or even zero fertilization rates after ICSI. Artificial oocyte activation has been proposed as a suitable means to overcome this problem. We applied artificial oocyte activation in patients which presented a history either no fertilization, fertilization between 0 and 30% or fertilization between 30 and 50% in initial ICSI cycles. In the following treatment cycles, oocytes were activated after ICSI using a calcium ionophore. Fertilization, pregnancy and take-home baby rates were compared to the previous cycle without activation. For the groups with previously 0% or 1-29% fertilization, we noted higher

  4. Effect of signs of oestrus, disease stressors and cow activity on pregnancy rate following artificial insemination.

    PubMed

    Bijker, I; Christley, R M; Smith, R F; Dobson, H

    2015-04-18

    The objective was to examine (a) how pregnancy rate on one farm (500 cows) was affected by signs of oestrus and disease stressors and (b) whether pregnancy rate could be maximised by considering cow activity. The signs of oestrus and timings were recorded at artificial insemination (AI), and cow activity was monitored by neck collars. Pregnancy rate tended to be higher in animals that displayed standing oestrus (35 v 26 per cent; P=0.06) but was 10 per cent lower in those cows with an elevated somatic cell count (SCC; >200,000 cells/ml milk) within 0-4 or 4-8 weeks prior to AI (P=0.01 and 0.05, respectively), irrespective of the incidence of clinical mastitis prior to AI. Cow activity data were available for 525 inseminations (from a total of 1299). The mean interval from increased activity to AI in all cows (11 hours 32 minutes; 95 per cent CI 10 hours 40 minutes to 12 hours 24 minutes) was not different for cows that did or did not establish a pregnancy (P=0.90). The pregnancy rate improved to the average of unaffected cows if AI was delayed by about eight hours in animals with an elevated SCC 0-4 weeks prior to AI (P=0.025), indicating that, in cows with prior elevated SCC, AI could be repeated approximately eight hours later to achieve maximum pregnancy rates.

  5. [Activity of NAD.H-generating enzymes and cytochrome content in mitochondria from rat liver and myocardium under artificial hypobiosis].

    PubMed

    Mel'nychuk, S D; Khyzhniak, S V; Morozova, V S; Voĭtsits'kyĭ, V M

    2013-01-01

    The modification particularities of the structural and functional state of the inner mitochondrial membrane of the rat liver and myocardium were observed in conditions of artificial hypobiosis, which was created using hypoxic and hypercapnic gas medium with a body temperature reduction. Under the artificial hypobiosis the activity of NAD.H-generating enzymes of the Krebs cycle of the liver mitochondria decreases. The established changes of the enzymes activity and cytochromes content of the inner mitochondrial membrane indicate the decrease of the oxidative activity of a respiratory chain, that can be limited on a terminal (cytochrome c oxidase) site and leads to the decrease (by 49% at an average) of the H+-ATPase activity of the liver mitochondria. Under the artificial hypobiosis the detected increase of the succinate-KoQ-oxidoreductase activity (by 65% at average) causes the maintaining of the functional activity of a mitochondrial respiratory chain, considering the high (relative to control) cytochrome c oxidase and H+-ATPase activities of the mitochondria of the rats' myocardium. The structural changes of the inner mitochondrial membrane of the liver and myocardium in experimental conditions are accompanied by the increase of hydrophobicity of tryptophan residues microenvironment and the intramolecular modifications of protein molecules.

  6. Novel activation domain derived from Che-1 cofactor coupled with the artificial protein Jazz drives utrophin upregulation.

    PubMed

    Desantis, Agata; Onori, Annalisa; Di Certo, Maria Grazia; Mattei, Elisabetta; Fanciulli, Maurizio; Passananti, Claudio; Corbi, Nicoletta

    2009-02-01

    Our aim is to upregulate the expression level of the dystrophin related gene utrophin in Duchenne muscular dystrophy, thus complementing the lack of dystrophin functions. To this end, we have engineered synthetic zinc finger based transcription factors. We have previously shown that the artificial three-zinc finger protein named Jazz fused with the Vp16 activation domain, is able to bind utrophin promoter A and to increase the endogenous level of utrophin in transgenic mice. Here, we report on an innovative artificial protein, named CJ7, that consists of Jazz DNA binding domain fused to a novel activation domain derived from the regulatory multivalent adaptor protein Che-1/AATF. This transcriptional activation domain is 100 amino acids in size and it is very powerful as compared to the Vp16 activation domain. We show that CJ7 protein efficiently promotes transcription and accumulation of the acetylated form of histone H3 on the genomic utrophin promoter locus.

  7. Lumbar Disc Degenerative Disease: Disc Degeneration Symptoms and Magnetic Resonance Image Findings

    PubMed Central

    Saleem, Shafaq; Rehmani, Muhammad Asim Khan; Raees, Aisha; Alvi, Arsalan Ahmad; Ashraf, Junaid

    2013-01-01

    Study Design Cross sectional and observational. Purpose To evaluate the different aspects of lumbar disc degenerative disc disease and relate them with magnetic resonance image (MRI) findings and symptoms. Overview of Literature Lumbar disc degenerative disease has now been proven as the most common cause of low back pain throughout the world. It may present as disc herniation, lumbar spinal stenosis, facet joint arthropathy or any combination. Presenting symptoms of lumbar disc degeneration are lower back pain and sciatica which may be aggravated by standing, walking, bending, straining and coughing. Methods This study was conducted from January 2012 to June 2012. Study was conducted on the diagnosed patients of lumbar disc degeneration. Diagnostic criteria were based upon abnormal findings in MRI. Patients with prior back surgery, spine fractures, sacroiliac arthritis, metabolic bone disease, spinal infection, rheumatoid arthritis, active malignancy, and pregnancy were excluded. Results During the targeted months, 163 patients of lumbar disc degeneration with mean age of 43.92±11.76 years, came into Neurosurgery department. Disc degeneration was most commonly present at the level of L4/L5 105 (64.4%).Commonest types of disc degeneration were disc herniation 109 (66.9%) and lumbar spinal stenosis 37 (22.7%). Spondylolisthesis was commonly present at L5/S1 10 (6.1%) and associated mostly with lumbar spinal stenosis 7 (18.9%). Conclusions Results reported the frequent occurrence of lumbar disc degenerative disease in advance age. Research efforts should endeavor to reduce risk factors and improve the quality of life. PMID:24353850

  8. Dynamic, six-axis stiffness matrix characteristics of the intact intervertebral disc and a disc replacement.

    PubMed

    Holsgrove, Timothy P; Gill, Harinderjit S; Miles, Anthony W; Gheduzzi, Sabina

    2015-11-01

    Thorough pre-testing is critical in assessing the likely in vivo performance of spinal devices prior to clinical use. However, there is a lack of data available concerning the dynamic testing of lumbar (porcine model) total disc replacements in all six axes under preload conditions. The aim of this study was to provide new data comparing porcine lumbar spinal specimen stiffness between the intact state and after the implantation of an unconstrained total disc replacement, in 6 degrees of freedom. The dynamic, stiffness matrix testing of six porcine lumbar isolated disc specimens was completed using triangle waves at a test frequency of 0.1 Hz. An axial preload of 500 N was applied during all testing. Specimens were tested both in the intact condition and after the implantation of the total disc replacement. Sixteen key stiffness terms were identified for the comparison of the intact and total disc replacement specimens, comprising the 6 principal stiffness terms and 10 key off-axis stiffness terms. The total disc replacement specimens were significantly different to the intact specimens in 12 of these key terms including all six principal stiffness terms. The implantation of the total disc replacement resulted in a mean reduction in the principal stiffness terms of 100%, 91%, and 98% in lateral bending, flexion-extension, and axial rotation, respectively. The novel findings of this study have demonstrated that the unconstrained, low-friction total disc replacement does not replicate the stiffness of the intact specimens. It is likely that other low-friction total disc replacements would produce similar results due to stiffness being actively minimised as part of the design of low-friction devices, without the introduction of stiffening elements or mechanisms to more accurately replicate the mechanical properties of the natural intervertebral disc. This study has demonstrated, for the first time, a method for the quantitative comparative mechanical function

  9. Investigation of cryogenic rupture disc design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keough, J. B.; Oldland, A. H.

    1973-01-01

    Rupture disc designs of both the active (command actuated) and passive (pressure ruptured) types were evaluated for performance characteristics at cryogenic temperatures and for capability to operate in a variety of cryogens, including gaseous and liquid fluorine. The test results, coupled with information from literature and industry searches, were used to establish a statement of design criteria and recommended practices for application of rupture discs to cryogenic rocket propellant feed and vent systems.

  10. A nanoflare model for active region radiance: application of artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bazarghan, M.; Safari, H.; Innes, D. E.; Karami, E.; Solanki, S. K.

    2008-12-01

    Context: Nanoflares are small impulsive bursts of energy that blend with and possibly make up much of the solar background emission. Determining their frequency and energy input is central to understanding the heating of the solar corona. One method is to extrapolate the energy frequency distribution of larger individually observed flares to lower energies. Only if the power law exponent is greater than 2 is it considered possible that nanoflares contribute significantly to the energy input. Aims: Time sequences of ultraviolet line radiances observed in the corona of an active region are modelled with the aim of determining the power law exponent of the nanoflare energy distribution. Methods: A simple nanoflare model based on three key parameters (the flare rate, the flare duration, and the power law exponent of the flare energy frequency distribution) is used to simulate emission line radiances from the ions Fe XIX, Ca XIII, and Si III, observed by SUMER in the corona of an active region as it rotates around the east limb of the Sun. Light curve pattern recognition by an Artificial Neural Network (ANN) scheme is used to determine the values. Results: The power law exponents, α≈2.8, 2.8, and 2.6 are obtained for Fe XIX, Ca XIII, and Si III respectively. Conclusions: The light curve simulations imply a power law exponent greater than the critical value of 2 for all ion species. This implies that if the energy of flare-like events is extrapolated to low energies, nanoflares could provide a significant contribution to the heating of active region coronae.

  11. DETECTING ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI USING MULTI-FILTER IMAGING DATA. II. INCORPORATING ARTIFICIAL NEURAL NETWORKS

    SciTech Connect

    Dong, X. Y.; De Robertis, M. M.

    2013-10-01

    This is the second paper of the series Detecting Active Galactic Nuclei Using Multi-filter Imaging Data. In this paper we review shapelets, an image manipulation algorithm, which we employ to adjust the point-spread function (PSF) of galaxy images. This technique is used to ensure the image in each filter has the same and sharpest PSF, which is the preferred condition for detecting AGNs using multi-filter imaging data as we demonstrated in Paper I of this series. We apply shapelets on Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope Legacy Survey Wide Survey ugriz images. Photometric parameters such as effective radii, integrated fluxes within certain radii, and color gradients are measured on the shapelets-reconstructed images. These parameters are used by artificial neural networks (ANNs) which yield: photometric redshift with an rms of 0.026 and a regression R-value of 0.92; galaxy morphological types with an uncertainty less than 2 T types for z ≤ 0.1; and identification of galaxies as AGNs with 70% confidence, star-forming/starburst (SF/SB) galaxies with 90% confidence, and passive galaxies with 70% confidence for z ≤ 0.1. The incorporation of ANNs provides a more reliable technique for identifying AGN or SF/SB candidates, which could be very useful for large-scale multi-filter optical surveys that also include a modest set of spectroscopic data sufficient to train neural networks.

  12. Bio-inspired electron-delivering system for reductive activation of dioxygen at metal centres towards artificial flavoenzymes

    PubMed Central

    Roux, Yoann; Ricoux, Rémy; Avenier, Frédéric; Mahy, Jean-Pierre

    2015-01-01

    Development of artificial systems, capable of delivering electrons to metal-based catalysts for the reductive activation of dioxygen, has been proven very difficult for decades, constituting a major scientific lock for the elaboration of environmentally friendly oxidation processes. Here we demonstrate that the incorporation of a flavin mononucleotide (FMN) in a water-soluble polymer, bearing a locally hydrophobic microenvironment, allows the efficient reduction of the FMN by NADH. This supramolecular entity is then capable of catalysing a very fast single-electron reduction of manganese(III) porphyrin by splitting the electron pair issued from NADH. This is fully reminiscent of the activity of natural reductases such as the cytochrome P450 reductases with kinetic parameters, which are three orders of magnitude faster compared with other artificial systems. Finally, we show as a proof of concept that the reduced manganese porphyrin activates dioxygen and catalyses the oxidation of organic substrates in water. PMID:26419885

  13. Reconstructing the star formation history of the Milky Way disc(s) from chemical abundances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snaith, O.; Haywood, M.; Di Matteo, P.; Lehnert, M. D.; Combes, F.; Katz, D.; Gómez, A.

    2015-06-01

    We develop a chemical evolution model to study the star formation history of the Milky Way. Our model assumes that the Milky Way has formed from a closed-box-like system in the inner regions, while the outer parts of the disc have experienced some accretion. Unlike the usual procedure, we do not fix the star formation prescription (e.g. Kennicutt law) to reproduce the chemical abundance trends. Instead, we fit the abundance trends with age to recover the star formation history of the Galaxy. Our method enables us to recover the star formation history of the Milky Way in the first Gyrs with unprecedented accuracy in the inner (R < 7-8 kpc) and outer (R > 9-10 kpc) discs, as sampled in the solar vicinity. We show that half the stellar mass formed during the thick-disc phase in the inner galaxy during the first 4-5 Gyr. This phase was followed by a significant dip in star formation activity (at 8-9 Gyr) and a period of roughly constant lower-level star formation for the remaining 8 Gyr. The thick-disc phase has produced as many metals in 4 Gyr as the thin-disc phase in the remaining 8 Gyr. Our results suggest that a closed-box model is able to fit all the available constraints in the inner disc. A closed-box system is qualitatively equivalent to a regime where the accretion rate maintains a high gas fraction in the inner disc at high redshift. In these conditions the SFR is mainly governed by the high turbulence of the interstellar medium. By z ~ 1 it is possible that most of the accretion takes place in the outer disc, while the star formation activity in the inner disc is mostly sustained by the gas that is not consumed during the thick-disc phase and the continuous ejecta from earlier generations of stars. The outer disc follows a star formation history very similar to that of the inner disc, although initiated at z ~ 2, about 2 Gyr before the onset of the thin-disc formation in the inner disc.

  14. Live birth after artificial oocyte activation using a ready-to-use ionophore: a prospective multicentre study.

    PubMed

    Ebner, Thomas; Montag, Markus; Montag, M; Van der Ven, K; Van der Ven, H; Ebner, T; Shebl, O; Oppelt, P; Hirchenhain, J; Krüssel, J; Maxrath, B; Gnoth, C; Friol, K; Tigges, J; Wünsch, E; Luckhaus, J; Beerkotte, A; Weiss, D; Grunwald, K; Struller, D; Etien, C

    2015-04-01

    Artificial oocyte activation has been proposed as a suitable means to overcome the problem of failed or impaired fertilization after intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). In a multicentre setting artificial oocyte activation was applied to 101 patients who were diagnosed with fertilization abnormalities (e.g. less than 50% fertilized oocytes) in a previous conventional ICSI cycle. Female gametes were activated for 15 min immediately after ICSI using a ready-to-use Ca(2+)-ionophore solution (A23187). Fertilization, pregnancy and live birth rates were compared with the preceding cycle without activation. The fertilization rate of 48% in the study cycles was significantly higher compared with the 25% in the control cycles (P < 0.001). Further splitting of the historical control group into failed (0%), low (1-30%) and moderate fertilization rate (31-50%) showed that all groups significantly benefitted (P < 0.001) in the ionophore cycle. Fewer patients had their embryo transfer cancelled compared with their previous treatments (1/101 versus 15/101). In total, 99% of the patients had an improved outcome with A23187 application resulting in a 28% live birth rate (35 babies). These data suggest that artificial oocyte activation using a ready-to-use compound is an efficient method.

  15. Mutagenic activity of peptides and the artificial sweetener aspartame after nitrosation.

    PubMed

    Shephard, S E; Wakabayashi, K; Nagao, M

    1993-05-01

    Naturally occurring dipeptides, cholecystokinine (CCK, a tetrapeptide hormone) and the artificial sweetener aspartame were nitrosated for 10-30 min with 40 mM-nitrite (pH 3.5, 37 degrees C), and the resultant products examined for mutagenicity in Salmonella typhimurium TA100. Specific mutagenicities (net revertants per mumol precursor) spanned four orders of magnitude, with CCK being the most potent precursor (4700 revertants/mumol) followed by tryptophyl-tryptophan (Trp-Trp; 1000 revertants/mumol). Aspartame and glycyl-Trp (Gly-Trp) had intermediate activity (300 revertants/mumol), while Gly-Gly and methionyl-methionine were only weakly mutagenic (20 and 12 revertants/mumol, respectively). The dipeptides of aspartic acid, phenylalanine and tyrosine had no detectable mutagenicity (limits of detection 0.5, 40 and 5 revertants/mumol, respectively). Kinetic studies with aspartame and Gly-Trp suggested that the mutagenic products arose primarily from nitrosation of the primary amine rather than the amide or indole group. The mutagenicities of nitrosated aspartame and Gly-Trp were higher in TA100 than in TA98, and higher without than with enzymatic activation (S-9 mix) in both strains. The time-course study of Trp-Trp nitrosation showed the production of at least two mutagens: a potent but unstable mutagenicity was seen at very short nitrosation times and a more stable but weaker effect was obtained after more than 60 min of nitrosation. Not only the absolute specific mutagenicity but also the nitrite dependence of the nitrosation reaction and the stability of the nitroso product must be taken into account in determining the risk posed by endogenous nitrosation of foods in the human stomach. Under stomach conditions, nitrosation of the side-chains of certain Trp peptides would be expected to contribute more to the endogenous burden of nitrosated products than nitrosation of aspartame or Gly peptides.

  16. Disc replacement using Pro-Disc C versus fusion: a prospective randomised and controlled radiographic and clinical study

    PubMed Central

    Ahlhelm, F.; Pitzen, T.; Steudel, W. I.; Jung, J.; Shariat, K.; Steimer, O.; Bachelier, F.; Pape, D.

    2006-01-01

    Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) may be considered to be the gold standard for treatment of symptomatic degenerative disc disease within the cervical spine. However, fusion of the segment may result in progressive degeneration of the adjacent segments. Therefore, dynamic stabilization procedures have been introduced. Among these, artificial disc replacement by disc prosthesis seems to be promising. However, to be so, segmental motion must be preserved. This, again, is very difficult to judge and has not yet been proven. The aim of the current study was to first analyse the segmental motion following artificial disc replacement using a disc prosthesis. A second aim was to compare both segmental motion as well as clinical result to the current gold standard (ACDF). This is a prospective controlled study. Twenty-five patients with cervical disc herniation were enrolled and assigned to either study group (receiving a disc prosthesis) or control group (receiving ACDF, using a cage with bone graft and an anterior plate.) Radiostereometric analysis was used to quantify intervertebral motion immediately as well as 3, 6, 12 and 24 weeks postoperatively. Further, clinical results were judged using visual analogue scale and neuro-examination. Cervical spine segmental motion decreased over time in the presence of disc prosthesis or ACDF. However, the loss of segmental motion is significantly higher in the ACDF group, when looked at 3, 6, 12 and 24 weeks after surgery. We observed significant pain reduction in neck and arm postoperatively, without significant difference between both groups (P > 0.05). Cervical spine disc prosthesis preserves cervical spine segmental motion within the first 6 months after surgery. The clinical results are the same when compared to the early results following ACDF. PMID:17106665

  17. Gibberellic Acid, Synthetic Auxins, and Ethylene Differentially Modulate α-l-Arabinofuranosidase Activities in Antisense 1-Aminocyclopropane-1-Carboxylic Acid Synthase Tomato Pericarp Discs1

    PubMed Central

    Sozzi, Gabriel O.; Greve, L. Carl; Prody, Gerry A.; Labavitch, John M.

    2002-01-01

    α-l-Arabinofuranosidases (α-Afs) are plant enzymes capable of releasing terminal arabinofuranosyl residues from cell wall matrix polymers, as well as from different glycoconjugates. Three different α-Af isoforms were distinguished by size exclusion chromatography of protein extracts from control tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum) and an ethylene synthesis-suppressed (ESS) line expressing an antisense 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic synthase transgene. α-Af I and II are active throughout fruit ontogeny. α-Af I is the first Zn-dependent cell wall enzyme isolated from tomato pericarp tissues, thus suggesting the involvement of zinc in fruit cell wall metabolism. This isoform is inhibited by 1,10-phenanthroline, but remains stable in the presence of NaCl and sucrose. α-Af II activity accounts for over 80% of the total α-Af activity in 10-d-old fruit, but activity drops during ripening. In contrast, α-Af III is ethylene dependent and specifically active during ripening. α-Af I released monosaccharide arabinose from KOH-soluble polysaccharides from tomato cell walls, whereas α-Af II and III acted on Na2CO3-soluble pectins. Different α-Af isoform responses to gibberellic acid, synthetic auxins, and ethylene were followed by using a novel ESS mature-green tomato pericarp disc system. α-Af I and II activity increased when gibberellic acid or 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid was applied, whereas ethylene treatment enhanced only α-Af III activity. Results suggest that tomato α-Afs are encoded by a gene family under differential hormonal controls, and probably have different in vivo functions. The ESS pericarp explant system allows comprehensive studies involving effects of physiological levels of different growth regulators on gene expression and enzyme activity with negligible wound-induced ethylene production. PMID:12114586

  18. Gibberellic acid, synthetic auxins, and ethylene differentially modulate alpha-L-Arabinofuranosidase activities in antisense 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid synthase tomato pericarp discs.

    PubMed

    Sozzi, Gabriel O; Greve, L Carl; Prody, Gerry A; Labavitch, John M

    2002-07-01

    Alpha-L-Arabinofuranosidases (alpha-Afs) are plant enzymes capable of releasing terminal arabinofuranosyl residues from cell wall matrix polymers, as well as from different glycoconjugates. Three different alpha-Af isoforms were distinguished by size exclusion chromatography of protein extracts from control tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum) and an ethylene synthesis-suppressed (ESS) line expressing an antisense 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic synthase transgene. alpha-Af I and II are active throughout fruit ontogeny. alpha-Af I is the first Zn-dependent cell wall enzyme isolated from tomato pericarp tissues, thus suggesting the involvement of zinc in fruit cell wall metabolism. This isoform is inhibited by 1,10-phenanthroline, but remains stable in the presence of NaCl and sucrose. alpha-Af II activity accounts for over 80% of the total alpha-Af activity in 10-d-old fruit, but activity drops during ripening. In contrast, alpha-Af III is ethylene dependent and specifically active during ripening. alpha-Af I released monosaccharide arabinose from KOH-soluble polysaccharides from tomato cell walls, whereas alpha-Af II and III acted on Na(2)CO(3)-soluble pectins. Different alpha-Af isoform responses to gibberellic acid, synthetic auxins, and ethylene were followed by using a novel ESS mature-green tomato pericarp disc system. alpha-Af I and II activity increased when gibberellic acid or 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid was applied, whereas ethylene treatment enhanced only alpha-Af III activity. Results suggest that tomato alpha-Afs are encoded by a gene family under differential hormonal controls, and probably have different in vivo functions. The ESS pericarp explant system allows comprehensive studies involving effects of physiological levels of different growth regulators on gene expression and enzyme activity with negligible wound-induced ethylene production.

  19. Herniated Lumbar Disc

    MedlinePlus

    ... 50. A herniated lumbar disc may also cause back pain, although back pain alone (without leg pain) can have many causes ... 90% success); surgery is less effective in relieving back pain. Nonsurgical treatment Your doctor may prescribe nonsurgical treatments ...

  20. Forecasting geomagnetic activity indices using the Boyle index through artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balasubramanian, Ramkumar

    2010-11-01

    Adverse space weather conditions affect various sectors making both human lives and technologies highly susceptible. This dissertation introduces a new set of algorithms suitable for short term space weather forecasts with an enhanced lead-time and better accuracy in predicting Kp, Dst and the AE index over some leading models. Kp is a 3-hour averaged global geomagnetic activity index good for midlatitude regions. The Dst index, an hourly index calculated using four ground based magnetic field measurements near the equator, measures the energy of the Earth's ring current. The Auroral Electrojet indices or AE indices are hourly indices used to characterize the global geomagnetic activity in the auroral zone. Our algorithms can predict these indices purely from the solar wind data with lead times up to 6 hours. We have trained and tested an ANN (Artificial Neural Network) over a complete solar cycle to serve this purpose. Over the last couple of decades, ANNs have been successful for temporal prediction problems amongst other advanced non-linear techniques. Our ANN-based algorithms receive near-real-time inputs either from ACE (Advanced Composition Explorer), located at L1, and a handful of ground-based magnetometers or only from ACE. The Boyle potential, phi = 10-4 (vkm/sec)2+ 11.7BnT sin3 (theta/2) kV, or the Boyle Index (BI) is an empirically-derived formula that approximates the Earth's polar cap potential and is easily derivable in real time using the solar wind data from ACE. The logarithms of both 3-hour and 1-hour averages of the Boyle Index correlate well with the subsequent Kp, Dst and AE: Kp = 8.93 log 10 - 12.55. Dst = 0.355 - 6.48, and AE = 5.87 - 83.46. Inputs to our ANN models have greatly benefitted from the BI and its proven record as a forecasting parameter since its initiation in October, 2003. A preconditioning event tunes the magnetosphere to a specific state before an impending geomagnetic storm. The neural net not only improves the

  1. Artificial antigen presenting cell (aAPC) mediated activation and expansion of natural killer T cells.

    PubMed

    East, James E; Sun, Wenji; Webb, Tonya J

    2012-01-01

    Natural killer T (NKT) cells are a unique subset of T cells that display markers characteristic of both natural killer (NK) cells and T cells(1). Unlike classical T cells, NKT cells recognize lipid antigen in the context of CD1 molecules(2). NKT cells express an invariant TCRα chain rearrangement: Vα14Jα18 in mice and Vα24Jα18 in humans, which is associated with Vβ chains of limited diversity(3-6), and are referred to as canonical or invariant NKT (iNKT) cells. Similar to conventional T cells, NKT cells develop from CD4-CD8- thymic precursor T cells following the appropriate signaling by CD1d (7). The potential to utilize NKT cells for therapeutic purposes has significantly increased with the ability to stimulate and expand human NKT cells with α-Galactosylceramide (α-GalCer) and a variety of cytokines(8). Importantly, these cells retained their original phenotype, secreted cytokines, and displayed cytotoxic function against tumor cell lines. Thus, ex vivo expanded NKT cells remain functional and can be used for adoptive immunotherapy. However, NKT cell based-immunotherapy has been limited by the use of autologous antigen presenting cells and the quantity and quality of these stimulator cells can vary substantially. Monocyte-derived DC from cancer patients have been reported to express reduced levels of costimulatory molecules and produce less inflammatory cytokines(9,10). In fact, murine DC rather than autologous APC have been used to test the function of NKT cells from CML patients(11). However, this system can only be used for in vitro testing since NKT cells cannot be expanded by murine DC and then used for adoptive immunotherapy. Thus, a standardized system that relies on artificial Antigen Presenting Cells (aAPC) could produce the stimulating effects of DC without the pitfalls of allo- or xenogeneic cells(12, 13). Herein, we describe a method for generating CD1d-based aAPC. Since the engagement of the T cell receptor (TCR) by CD1d-antigen complexes is

  2. Sweet taste receptor expression in ruminant intestine and its activation by artificial sweeteners to regulate glucose absorption.

    PubMed

    Moran, A W; Al-Rammahi, M; Zhang, C; Bravo, D; Calsamiglia, S; Shirazi-Beechey, S P

    2014-01-01

    Absorption of glucose from the lumen of the intestine into enterocytes is accomplished by sodium-glucose co-transporter 1 (SGLT1). In the majority of mammalian species, expression (this includes activity) of SGLT1 is upregulated in response to increased dietary monosaccharides. This regulatory pathway is initiated by sensing of luminal sugar by the gut-expressed sweet taste receptor. The objectives of our studies were to determine (1) if the ruminant intestine expresses the sweet taste receptor, which consists of two subunits [taste 1 receptor 2 (T1R2) and 3 (T1R3)], and other key signaling molecules required for SGLT1 upregulation in nonruminant intestines, and (2) whether T1R2-T1R3 sensing of artificial sweeteners induces release of glucagon-like peptide-2 (GLP-2) and enhances SGLT1 expression. We found that the small intestine of sheep and cattle express T1R2, T1R3, G-protein gustducin, and GLP-2 in enteroendocrine L-cells. Maintaining 110-d-old ruminating calves for 60d on a diet containing a starter concentrate and the artificial sweetener Sucram (consisting of saccharin and neohesperidin dihydrochalcone; Pancosma SA, Geneva, Switzerland) enhances (1) Na(+)-dependent d-glucose uptake by over 3-fold, (2) villus height and crypt depth by 1.4- and 1.2-fold, and (3) maltase- and alkaline phosphatase-specific activity by 1.5-fold compared to calves maintained on the same diet without Sucram. No statistically significant differences were observed for rates of intestinal glucose uptake, villus height, crypt depth, or enzyme activities between 50-d-old milk-fed calves and calves maintained on the same diet containing Sucram. When adult cows were kept on a diet containing 80:20 ryegrass hay-to-concentrate supplemented with Sucram, more than a 7-fold increase in SGLT1 protein abundance was noted. Collectively, the data indicate that inclusion of this artificial sweetener enhances SGLT1 expression and mucosal growth in ruminant animals. Exposure of ruminant sheep

  3. Sweet taste receptor expression in ruminant intestine and its activation by artificial sweeteners to regulate glucose absorption.

    PubMed

    Moran, A W; Al-Rammahi, M; Zhang, C; Bravo, D; Calsamiglia, S; Shirazi-Beechey, S P

    2014-01-01

    Absorption of glucose from the lumen of the intestine into enterocytes is accomplished by sodium-glucose co-transporter 1 (SGLT1). In the majority of mammalian species, expression (this includes activity) of SGLT1 is upregulated in response to increased dietary monosaccharides. This regulatory pathway is initiated by sensing of luminal sugar by the gut-expressed sweet taste receptor. The objectives of our studies were to determine (1) if the ruminant intestine expresses the sweet taste receptor, which consists of two subunits [taste 1 receptor 2 (T1R2) and 3 (T1R3)], and other key signaling molecules required for SGLT1 upregulation in nonruminant intestines, and (2) whether T1R2-T1R3 sensing of artificial sweeteners induces release of glucagon-like peptide-2 (GLP-2) and enhances SGLT1 expression. We found that the small intestine of sheep and cattle express T1R2, T1R3, G-protein gustducin, and GLP-2 in enteroendocrine L-cells. Maintaining 110-d-old ruminating calves for 60d on a diet containing a starter concentrate and the artificial sweetener Sucram (consisting of saccharin and neohesperidin dihydrochalcone; Pancosma SA, Geneva, Switzerland) enhances (1) Na(+)-dependent d-glucose uptake by over 3-fold, (2) villus height and crypt depth by 1.4- and 1.2-fold, and (3) maltase- and alkaline phosphatase-specific activity by 1.5-fold compared to calves maintained on the same diet without Sucram. No statistically significant differences were observed for rates of intestinal glucose uptake, villus height, crypt depth, or enzyme activities between 50-d-old milk-fed calves and calves maintained on the same diet containing Sucram. When adult cows were kept on a diet containing 80:20 ryegrass hay-to-concentrate supplemented with Sucram, more than a 7-fold increase in SGLT1 protein abundance was noted. Collectively, the data indicate that inclusion of this artificial sweetener enhances SGLT1 expression and mucosal growth in ruminant animals. Exposure of ruminant sheep

  4. Induction of genomic instability and activation of autophagy in artificial human aneuploid cells.

    PubMed

    Ariyoshi, Kentaro; Miura, Tomisato; Kasai, Kosuke; Fujishima, Yohei; Oshimura, Mitsuo; Yoshida, Mitsuaki A

    2016-08-01

    Chromosome missegregation can lead to a change in chromosome number known as aneuploidy. Although aneuploidy is a known hallmark of cancer cells, the various mechanisms by which altered gene and/or DNA copy number facilitate tumorigenesis remain unclear. To understand the effect of aneuploidy occurring in non-tumorigenic human breast epithelial cells, we generated clones harboring artificial aneuploidy using microcell-mediated chromosome transfer. Our results demonstrate that clones with artificial aneuploidy of chromosome 8 or chromosome 22 both show inhibited proliferation and genomic instability. Also, the increased autophagy was observed in the artificially aneuploidy clones, and inhibition of autophagy resulted in increased genomic instability and DNA damage. In addition, the intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species were up-regulated in the artificially aneuploid clones, and inhibition of autophagy further increased the production of reactive oxygen species. Together, these results suggest that even a single extraneous chromosome can induce genomic instability, and that autophagy triggered by aneuploidy-induced stress is a mechanism to protect cells bearing abnormal chromosome number. PMID:27343755

  5. Crystallization of Self-Propelled Hard Discs.

    PubMed

    Briand, G; Dauchot, O

    2016-08-26

    We experimentally study the crystallization of a monolayer of vibrated discs with a built-in polar asymmetry, a model system of active liquids, and contrast it with that of vibrated isotropic discs. Increasing the packing fraction ϕ, the quasicontinuous crystallization reported for isotropic discs is replaced by a transition, or a crossover, towards a "self-melting" crystal. Starting from the liquid phase and increasing the packing fraction, clusters of dense hexagonal-ordered packed discs spontaneously form, melt, split, and merge, leading to a highly intermittent and heterogeneous dynamics. For a packing fraction larger than ϕ^{*}, a few large clusters span the system size. The cluster size distribution is monotonically decreasing for ϕ<ϕ^{*}, nonmonotonic for ϕ>ϕ^{*}, and is a power law at the transition. The system is, however, never dynamically arrested. The clusters permanently melt from place to place, forming droplets of an active liquid which rapidly propagate across the system. This self-melting crystalline state subsists up to the highest possible packing fraction, questioning the stability of the crystal for active discs unless it is at ordered close packing. PMID:27610889

  6. Crystallization of Self-Propelled Hard Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briand, G.; Dauchot, O.

    2016-08-01

    We experimentally study the crystallization of a monolayer of vibrated discs with a built-in polar asymmetry, a model system of active liquids, and contrast it with that of vibrated isotropic discs. Increasing the packing fraction ϕ , the quasicontinuous crystallization reported for isotropic discs is replaced by a transition, or a crossover, towards a "self-melting" crystal. Starting from the liquid phase and increasing the packing fraction, clusters of dense hexagonal-ordered packed discs spontaneously form, melt, split, and merge, leading to a highly intermittent and heterogeneous dynamics. For a packing fraction larger than ϕ*, a few large clusters span the system size. The cluster size distribution is monotonically decreasing for ϕ <ϕ*, nonmonotonic for ϕ >ϕ*, and is a power law at the transition. The system is, however, never dynamically arrested. The clusters permanently melt from place to place, forming droplets of an active liquid which rapidly propagate across the system. This self-melting crystalline state subsists up to the highest possible packing fraction, questioning the stability of the crystal for active discs unless it is at ordered close packing.

  7. Biodegradable nanoellipsoidal artificial antigen presenting cells for antigen specific T-cell activation.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Randall A; Sunshine, Joel C; Perica, Karlo; Kosmides, Alyssa K; Aje, Kent; Schneck, Jonathan P; Green, Jordan J

    2015-04-01

    Non-spherical nanodimensional artificial antigen presenting cells (naAPCs) offer the potential to systemically induce an effective antigen-specific immune response. In this report it is shown biodegradable ellipsoidal naAPCs mimic the T-Cell/APC interaction better than equivalent spherical naAPCs. In addition, it is demonstrated ellipsoidal naAPCs offer reduced non-specific cellular uptake and a superior pharmacokinetic profile compared to spherical naAPCs. PMID:25641795

  8. Enhancing the Activity of Peptide-Based Artificial Hydrolase with Catalytic Ser/His/Asp Triad and Molecular Imprinting.

    PubMed

    Wang, Mengfan; Lv, Yuqi; Liu, Xiaojing; Qi, Wei; Su, Rongxin; He, Zhimin

    2016-06-01

    In this study, an artificial hydrolase was developed by combining the catalytic Ser/His/Asp triad with N-fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl diphenylalanine (Fmoc-FF), followed by coassembly of the peptides into nanofibers (CoA-HSD). The peptide-based nanofibers provide an ideal supramolecular framework to support the functional groups. Compared with the self-assembled catalytic nanofibers (SA-H), which contain only the catalytic histidine residue, the highest activity of CoA-HSD occurs when histidine, serine, and aspartate residues are at a ratio of 40:1:1. This indicates that the well-ordered nanofiber structure and the synergistic effects of serine and aspartate residues contribute to the enhancement in activity. Additionally, for the first time, molecular imprinting was applied to further enhance the activity of the peptide-based artificial enzyme (CoA-HSD). p-NPA was used as the molecular template to arrange the catalytic Ser/His/Asp triad residues in the proper orientation. As a result, the activity of imprinted coassembled CoA-HSD nanofibers is 7.86 times greater than that of nonimprinted CoA-HSD and 13.48 times that of SA-H.

  9. Revival of the Jumping Disc

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ucke, C.; Schlichting, H-J.

    2009-01-01

    Snap discs made of bimetal have many technical applications as thermostats. Jumping discs are a toy version of such snap discs. Besides giving technical information, we describe physical investigations. We show especially how, through simple measurements and calculations, you can determine the initial speed ([approximately equal to]3.5 m…

  10. How do accretion discs break?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dogan, Suzan

    2016-07-01

    Accretion discs are common in binary systems, and they are often found to be misaligned with respect to the binary orbit. The gravitational torque from a companion induces nodal precession in misaligned disc orbits. In this study, we first calculate whether this precession is strong enough to overcome the internal disc torques communicating angular momentum. We compare the disc precession torque with the disc viscous torque to determine whether the disc should warp or break. For typical parameters precession wins: the disc breaks into distinct planes that precess effectively independently. To check our analytical findings, we perform 3D hydrodynamical numerical simulations using the PHANTOM smoothed particle hydrodynamics code, and confirm that disc breaking is widespread and enhances accretion on to the central object. For some inclinations, the disc goes through strong Kozai cycles. Disc breaking promotes markedly enhanced and variable accretion and potentially produces high-energy particles or radiation through shocks. This would have significant implications for all binary systems: e.g. accretion outbursts in X-ray binaries and fuelling supermassive black hole (SMBH) binaries. The behaviour we have discussed in this work is relevant to a variety of astrophysical systems, for example X-ray binaries, where the disc plane may be tilted by radiation warping, SMBH binaries, where accretion of misaligned gas can create effectively random inclinations and protostellar binaries, where a disc may be misaligned by a variety of effects such as binary capture/exchange, accretion after binary formation.

  11. The Chemistry of Optical Discs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Birkett, David

    2002-01-01

    Explains the chemistry used in compact discs (CD), digital versatile discs (DVD), and magneto-optical (MO) discs focusing on the steps of initial creation of the mold, the molding of the polycarbonate, the deposition of the reflective layers, the lacquering of the CDs, and the bonding of DVDs. (Contains 15 references.) (YDS)

  12. The Teddy Bears' Disc.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laurillard, Diana

    1985-01-01

    Reports an evaluation of the Teddy Bear disc, an interactive videodisc developed at the Open University for a second-level course in metallurgy and materials technology. Findings from observation of students utilizing the videodisc are reviewed; successful design features and design problems are considered; and development costs are outlined. (MBR)

  13. Segmental mobility, disc height and patient-reported outcomes after surgery for degenerative disc disease: a prospective randomised trial comparing disc replacement and multidisciplinary rehabilitation.

    PubMed

    Johnsen, L G; Brinckmann, P; Hellum, C; Rossvoll, I; Leivseth, G

    2013-01-01

    This prospective multicentre study was undertaken to determine segmental movement, disc height and sagittal alignment after total disc replacement (TDR) in the lumbosacral spine and to assess the correlation of biomechanical properties to clinical outcomes.A total of 173 patients with degenerative disc disease and low back pain for more than one year were randomised to receive either TDR or multidisciplinary rehabilitation (MDR). Segmental movement in the sagittal plane and disc height were measured using distortion compensated roentgen analysis (DCRA) comparing radiographs in active flexion and extension. Correlation analysis between the range of movement or disc height and patient-reported outcomes was performed in both groups. After two years, no significant change in movement in the sagittal plane was found in segments with TDR or between the two treatment groups. It remained the same or increased slightly in untreated segments in the TDR group and in this group there was a significant increase in disc height in the operated segments. There was no correlation between segmental movement or disc height and patient-reported outcomes in either group.In this study, insertion of an intervertebral disc prosthesis TDR did not increase movement in the sagittal plane and segmental movement did not correlate with patient-reported outcomes. This suggests that in the lumbar spine the movement preserving properties of TDR are not major determinants of clinical outcomes.

  14. Deciphering a nanocarbon-based artificial peroxidase: chemical identification of the catalytically active and substrate-binding sites on graphene quantum dots.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hanjun; Zhao, Andong; Gao, Nan; Li, Kai; Ren, Jinsong; Qu, Xiaogang

    2015-06-01

    The design and construction of efficient artificial enzymes is highly desirable. Recent studies have demonstrated that a series of carbon nanomaterials possess intrinsic peroxidase activity. Among them, graphene quantum dots (GQDs) have a high enzymatic activity. However, the catalytic mechanism remains unclear. Therefore, in this report, we chose to decipher their peroxidase activity. By selectively deactivating the ketonic carbonyl, carboxylic, or hydroxy groups and investigating the catalytic activities of these GQD derivatives, we obtained evidence that the -C=O groups were the catalytically active sites, whereas the O=C-O- groups acted as substrate-binding sites, and -C-OH groups can inhibit the activity. These results were corroborated by theoretical studies. This work should not only enhance our understanding of nanocarbon-based artificial enzymes, but also facilitate the design and construction of other types of target-specific artificial enzymes.

  15. Basics of videodisc and optical disc technology

    SciTech Connect

    Paris, J.

    1983-11-01

    The optical videodisc is now being used for archival storage of photographs and for records management. The spacedisc project, co-sponsored by nasa and drew university's center for aerospace education, is a prime example of using a videodisc to store individual photographs, slides, and motion sequences with an accompanying paper index. These discs are also used in schools in an interactive individualized learning carrel under microcomputer control. Museums also are using discs as complements to exhibits as well as in cataloging and in classification, information storage and retrieval systems. Ongoing imaginative applications of the optical videodisc include surrogate travel, job performance aids, simulators, electronic malls, and travelogues. Eventually, one will see the videodisc and computer technology with artificial intelligence programs used by the medical community and others. Optical disc and videodisc technology have opened up new horizons for information processing, storage and retrieval, education and training. Regardless of whether a mass consumer market materializes, optical recording technology will play a major role in the future design and development of information systems in the late 1980s and beyond.

  16. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Waltz, David L.

    1982-01-01

    Describes kinds of results achieved by computer programs in artificial intelligence. Topics discussed include heuristic searches, artificial intelligence/psychology, planning program, backward chaining, learning (focusing on Winograd's blocks to explore learning strategies), concept learning, constraint propagation, language understanding…

  17. Role of Cytokines in Intervertebral Disc Degeneration: Pain and Disc-content

    PubMed Central

    Risbud, Makarand V.; Shapiro, Irving. M

    2014-01-01

    Degeneration of the intervertebral disc is the major contributor to back/neck and radicular pain. It is characterized by an elevation in levels of the inflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, interleukin (IL)-1 α/β, IL-6 and IL-17 secreted by the disc cells themselves; these cytokines promote matrix degradation, chemokine production and changes in cell phenotype. The resulting imbalance between catabolic and anabolic responses leads to degeneration, as well as herniation and radicular pain. Release of chemokines from degenerating discs promote infiltration and activation of T and B cells, macrophages, neutrophils, and mast cells further amplifying the inflammatory cascade. Immunocyte migration into the disc is accompanied by the appearance of microvasculature and nerve fibers arising from the dorsal root ganglion (DRG). In this inflammatory milieu, neurogenic factors in particular nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derive neurotrophic factor (BDNF) generated by disc and immune cells induce expression of pain associated cation channels in DRGs. Depolarization of these channels is likely to promote discogenic and radicular pain and reinforce the cytokine-mediated degenerative cascade. Taken together, the enhanced understanding of the contribution of cytokines and immune cells to catabolic and nociceptive processes provide new targets for treating symptomatic disc disease. PMID:24166242

  18. Characterization of global flow and local fluctuations in 3D SPH simulations of protoplanetary discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arena, S. E.; Gonzalez, J.-F.

    2013-07-01

    A complete and detailed knowledge of the structure of the gaseous component in protoplanetary discs is essential to the study of dust evolution during the early phases of pre-planetesimal formation. The aim of this paper is to determine if three-dimensional accretion discs simulated by the smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) method can reproduce the observational data now available and the expected turbulent nature of protoplanetary discs. The investigation is carried out by setting up a suite of diagnostic tools specifically designed to characterize both the global flow and the fluctuations of the gaseous disc. The main result concerns the role of the artificial viscosity implementation in the SPH method: in addition to the already known ability of SPH artificial viscosity to mimic a physical-like viscosity under specific conditions, we show how the same artificial viscosity prescription behaves like an implicit turbulence model. In fact, we identify a threshold for the parameters in the standard artificial viscosity above which SPH disc models present a cascade in the power spectrum of velocity fluctuations, turbulent diffusion and a mass accretion rate of the same order of magnitude as measured in observations. Furthermore, the turbulence properties observed locally in SPH disc models are accompanied by meridional circulation in the global flow of the gas, proving that the two mechanisms can coexist.

  19. Host galaxy colour gradients and accretion disc obscuration in AEGIS z ~ 1 X-ray-selected active galactic nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierce, C. M.; Lotz, J. M.; Salim, S.; Laird, E. S.; Coil, A. L.; Bundy, K.; Willmer, C. N. A.; Rosario, D. J. V.; Primack, J. R.; Faber, S. M.

    2010-10-01

    We describe the effect of active galactic nucleus (AGN) light on host galaxy optical and UV-optical colours, as determined from X-ray-selected AGN host galaxies at z ~ 1, and compare the AGN host galaxy colours to those of a control sample matched to the AGN sample in both redshift and stellar mass. We identify as X-ray-selected AGNs 8.7+4-3 per cent of the red-sequence control galaxies, 9.8 +/- 3 per cent of the blue-cloud control galaxies and 14.7+4-3 per cent of the green-valley control galaxies. The nuclear colours of AGN hosts are generally bluer than their outer colours, while the control galaxies exhibit redder nuclei. AGNs in blue-cloud host galaxies experience less X-ray obscuration, while AGNs in red-sequence hosts have more, which is the reverse of what is expected from general considerations of the interstellar medium. Outer and integrated colours of AGN hosts generally agree with the control galaxies, regardless of X-ray obscuration, but the nuclear colours of unobscured AGNs are typically much bluer, especially for X-ray luminous objects. Visible point sources are seen in many of these, indicating that the nuclear colours have been contaminated by AGN light and that obscuration of the X-ray radiation and visible light are therefore highly correlated. Red AGN hosts are typically slightly bluer than red-sequence control galaxies, which suggests that their stellar populations are slightly younger. We compare these colour data to current models of AGN formation. The unexpected trend of less X-ray obscuration in blue-cloud galaxies and more in red-sequence galaxies is problematic for all AGN feedback models, in which gas and dust is thought to be removed as star formation shuts down. A second class of models involving radiative instabilities in hot gas is more promising for red-sequence AGNs but predicts a larger number of point sources in red-sequence AGNs than is observed. Regardless, it appears that multiple AGN models are necessary to explain the

  20. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Information Technology Quarterly, 1985

    1985-01-01

    This issue of "Information Technology Quarterly" is devoted to the theme of "Artificial Intelligence." It contains two major articles: (1) Artificial Intelligence and Law" (D. Peter O'Neill and George D. Wood); (2) "Artificial Intelligence: A Long and Winding Road" (John J. Simon, Jr.). In addition, it contains two sidebars: (1) "Calculating and…

  1. Project DISC: Developing Indian Software Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacobi, Carolyn

    Project DISC (Developing Indian Software Curriculum) was initiated in the Rapid City (South Dakota) school district to improve Native American children's reading and language arts ability and to provide them with microcomputer skills. During the summer of 1982, introductory computer activities were planned, a computer specialist was hired, and…

  2. TiO2@CeOx core-shell nanoparticles as artificial enzymes with peroxidase-like activity.

    PubMed

    Artiglia, Luca; Agnoli, Stefano; Paganini, Maria Cristina; Cattelan, Mattia; Granozzi, Gaetano

    2014-11-26

    The Ce4+↔Ce3+ redox switch is at the basis of an all-inorganic catalytic cycle that is capable of mimicking the activity of several natural redox enzymes. The efficiency of these artificial enzymes (nanozymes) strongly depends on the Ce4+/Ce3+ ratio. By capitalizing on the results obtained on oxide/oxide model systems, we implemented a simple and effective procedure to obtain conformal TiO2@CeOx core-shell nanoparticles whose thickness is controlled with single-layer precision. Since the Ce3+ species are stabilized only at the interface by the electronic hybridization with the TiO2 states, the modulation of the shell thickness offers a simple method to tailor the Ce4+/Ce3+ ratio and therefore the catalytic properties. The activity of these nanoparticles as artificial peroxidase-like enzymes was tested, showing exceptional performances, even better than natural horseradish peroxidase enzyme. The main advantage with respect to other oxide/oxide nanozymes is that our nanoparticles, having a tunable Ce4+/Ce3+ ratio, are efficient already at low H2O2 concentrations.

  3. Stimulation of reproductive activity in anovulatory Alpine goats exposed to bucks treated only with artificially long days.

    PubMed

    Delgadillo, J A; Vélez, L I

    2010-12-01

    Two experiments were conducted in a subtropical latitude to determine the response of Alpine male goats to a treatment with artificially long days (experiment 1), and the response of anovulatory lactating Alpine does exposed to males treated only with artificially long days (experiment 2). In experiment 1, one group of males was kept under natural photoperiod (n = 4) while another was exposed to 2.5 months of artificially long days (16 h of light/day) from 1 December (n = 4). Plasma testosterone concentrations were determined weekly. Intensity of odor of males was determined every 2 weeks. Sexual behavior of bucks was observed during 3 days about 90 days after the end of the long day treatment. A treatment-by-time interaction was detected for testosterone secretion (P < 0.001). In control males, low plasma concentrations of testosterone were observed from March to June. In contrast, in long-day treated males, high levels of testosterone were observed from March to June (P < 0.05). A treatment-by-time interaction was detected for the intensity of male odor (P < 0.01). The male odor was stronger in long-day treated bucks than in untreated ones from March to June (P < 0.05). The number of ano-genital sniffing, nudging and flehmen was greater in long-day treated males than in untreated ones when exposed to anestrous does (P < 0.05). In experiment 2, one group of males was left under natural photoperiod variations (n = 5) and the other (n = 5) was submitted to the same photoperiodic treatment described in experiment 1. On 3 May, three untreated and three long-day treated males were put in contact with anestrous Alpine does left under natural photoperiod. Fertility was higher in does exposed to light-treated males (36/45, 80%) than those in contact with untreated ones (3/45, 7%; P < 0.05). Prolificacy was similar (P > 0.05) in does exposed to treated (1.8 ± 0.1) and untreated males (1.7 ± 0.3). These results indicate that the sexual activity of Alpine male goats raised

  4. Disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) L100P mutants have impaired activity-dependent plasticity in vivo and in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Tropea, D; Molinos, I; Petit, E; Bellini, S; Nagakura, I; O'Tuathaigh, C; Schorova, L; Mitchell, K J; Waddington, J; Sur, M; Gill, M; Corvin, A P

    2016-01-01

    Major neuropsychiatric disorders are genetically complex but share overlapping etiology. Mice mutant for rare, highly penetrant risk variants can be useful in dissecting the molecular mechanisms involved. The gene disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) has been associated with increased risk for neuropsychiatric conditions. Mice mutant for Disc1 display morphological, functional and behavioral deficits that are consistent with impairments observed across these disorders. Here we report that Disc1 L100P mutants are less able to reorganize cortical circuitry in response to stimulation in vivo. Molecular analysis reveals that the mutants have a reduced expression of PSD95 and pCREB in visual cortex and fail to adjust expression of such markers in response to altered stimulation. In vitro analysis shows that mutants have impaired functional reorganization of cortical neurons in response to selected forms of neuronal stimulation, but there is no altered basal expression of synaptic markers. These findings suggest that DISC1 has a critical role in the reorganization of cortical plasticity and that this phenotype becomes evident only under challenge, even at early postnatal stages. This result may represent an important etiological mechanism in the emergence of neuropsychiatric disorders. PMID:26756905

  5. Evaluation of artificial neural network algorithms for predicting METs and activity type from accelerometer data: validation on an independent sample

    PubMed Central

    Lyden, Kate; Kozey-Keadle, Sarah; Staudenmayer, John

    2011-01-01

    Previous work from our laboratory provided a “proof of concept” for use of artificial neural networks (nnets) to estimate metabolic equivalents (METs) and identify activity type from accelerometer data (Staudenmayer J, Pober D, Crouter S, Bassett D, Freedson P, J Appl Physiol 107: 1330–1307, 2009). The purpose of this study was to develop new nnets based on a larger, more diverse, training data set and apply these nnet prediction models to an independent sample to evaluate the robustness and flexibility of this machine-learning modeling technique. The nnet training data set (University of Massachusetts) included 277 participants who each completed 11 activities. The independent validation sample (n = 65) (University of Tennessee) completed one of three activity routines. Criterion measures were 1) measured METs assessed using open-circuit indirect calorimetry; and 2) observed activity to identify activity type. The nnet input variables included five accelerometer count distribution features and the lag-1 autocorrelation. The bias and root mean square errors for the nnet MET trained on University of Massachusetts and applied to University of Tennessee were +0.32 and 1.90 METs, respectively. Seventy-seven percent of the activities were correctly classified as sedentary/light, moderate, or vigorous intensity. For activity type, household and locomotion activities were correctly classified by the nnet activity type 98.1 and 89.5% of the time, respectively, and sport was correctly classified 23.7% of the time. Use of this machine-learning technique operates reasonably well when applied to an independent sample. We propose the creation of an open-access activity dictionary, including accelerometer data from a broad array of activities, leading to further improvements in prediction accuracy for METs, activity intensity, and activity type. PMID:21885802

  6. Artificial ribonucleases inactivate a wide range of viruses using their ribonuclease, membranolytic, and chaotropic-like activities.

    PubMed

    Fedorova, Antonina A; Goncharova, Elena P; Koroleva, Lyudmila S; Burakova, Ekatherina A; Ryabchikova, Elena I; Bichenkova, Elena V; Silnikov, Vladimir N; Vlassov, Valentin V; Zenkova, Marina A

    2016-09-01

    Artificial ribonucleases (aRNases) are small compounds catalysing RNA cleavage. Recently we demonstrated that aRNases readily inactivate various viruses in vitro. Here, for three series of aRNases (1,4-diazabicyclo [2.2.2]octane-based and peptide-like compounds) we show that apart from ribonuclease activity the aRNases display chaotropic-like and membranolytic activities. The levels of membranolytic and chaotropic-like activities correlate well with the efficiency of various viruses inactivation (enveloped, non-enveloped, RNA-, DNA-containing). We evaluated the impact of these activities on the efficiency of virus inactivation and found: i) the synergism between membranolytic and chaotropic-like activities is sufficient for the inactivation of enveloped viruses (influenza A, encephalitis, vaccinia viruses) for 1,4-diazabicyclo [2.2.2]octane based aRNases, ii) the inactivation of non-enveloped viruses (encephalomyocarditis, acute bee paralysis viruses) is totally dependent on the synergism of chaotropic-like and ribonuclease activities, iii) ribonuclease activity plays a leading role in the inactivation of RNA viruses by aRNases Dp12F6, Dtr12 and K-D-1, iv) peptide-like aRNases (L2-3, K-2) being effective virus killers have a more specific mode of action. Obtained results clearly demonstrate that aRNases represent a new class of broad-spectrum virus-inactivating agents. PMID:27476043

  7. Biomechanics of Disc Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Palepu, V.; Kodigudla, M.; Goel, V. K.

    2012-01-01

    Disc degeneration and associated disorders are among the most debated topics in the orthopedic literature over the past few decades. These may be attributed to interrelated mechanical, biochemical, and environmental factors. The treatment options vary from conservative approaches to surgery, depending on the severity of degeneration and response to conservative therapies. Spinal fusion is considered to be the “gold standard” in surgical methods till date. However, the association of adjacent level degeneration has led to the evolution of motion preservation technologies like spinal arthroplasty and posterior dynamic stabilization systems. These new technologies are aimed to address pain and preserve motion while maintaining a proper load sharing among various spinal elements. This paper provides an elaborative biomechanical review of the technologies aimed to address the disc degeneration and reiterates the point that biomechanical efficacy followed by long-term clinical success will allow these nonfusion technologies as alternatives to fusion, at least in certain patient population. PMID:22745914

  8. LUMBAR DISC HERNIATION

    PubMed Central

    Vialle, Luis Roberto; Vialle, Emiliano Neves; Suárez Henao, Juan Esteban; Giraldo, Gustavo

    2015-01-01

    Lumbar disc herniation is the most common diagnosis among the degenerative abnormalities of the lumbar spine (affecting 2 to 3% of the population), and is the principal cause of spinal surgery among the adult population. The typical clinical picture includes initial lumbalgia, followed by progressive sciatica. The natural history of disc herniation is one of rapid resolution of the symptoms (four to six weeks). The initial treatment should be conservative, managed through medication and physiotherapy, sometimes associated with percutaneous nerve root block. Surgical treatment is indicated if pain control is unsuccessful, if there is a motor deficit greater than grade 3, if there is radicular pain associated with foraminal stenosis, or if cauda equina syndrome is present. The latter represents a medical emergency. A refined surgical technique, with removal of the extruded fragment and preservation of the ligamentum flavum, resolves the sciatic symptoms and reduces the risk of recurrence over the long term. PMID:27019834

  9. Total disc replacement.

    PubMed

    Vital, J-M; Boissière, L

    2014-02-01

    Total disc replacement (TDR) (partial disc replacement will not be described) has been used in the lumbar spine since the 1980s, and more recently in the cervical spine. Although the biomechanical concepts are the same and both are inserted through an anterior approach, lumbar TDR is conventionally indicated for chronic low back pain, whereas cervical TDR is used for soft discal hernia resulting in cervicobrachial neuralgia. The insertion technique must be rigorous, with precise centering in the disc space, taking account of vascular anatomy, which is more complex in the lumbar region, particularly proximally to L5-S1. All of the numerous studies, including prospective randomized comparative trials, have demonstrated non-inferiority to fusion, or even short-term superiority regarding speed of improvement. The main implant-related complication is bridging heterotopic ossification with resulting loss of range of motion and increased rates of adjacent segment degeneration, although with an incidence lower than after arthrodesis. A sufficiently long follow-up, which has not yet been reached, will be necessary to establish definitively an advantage for TDR, particularly in the cervical spine. PMID:24412045

  10. Dust dynamics in 2D gravito-turbulent discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Ji-Ming; Zhu, Zhaohuan; Stone, James M.; Chiang, Eugene

    2016-06-01

    The dynamics of solid bodies in protoplanetary discs are subject to the properties of any underlying gas turbulence. Turbulence driven by disc self-gravity shows features distinct from those driven by the magnetorotational instability (MRI). We study the dynamics of solids in gravito-turbulent discs with two-dimensional (in the disc plane), hybrid (particle and gas) simulations. Gravito-turbulent discs can exhibit stronger gravitational stirring than MRI-active discs, resulting in greater radial diffusion and larger eccentricities and relative speeds for large particles (those with dimensionless stopping times tstopΩ > 1, where Ω is the orbital frequency). The agglomeration of large particles into planetesimals by pairwise collisions is therefore disfavoured in gravito-turbulent discs. However, the relative speeds of intermediate-size particles (tstopΩ ˜ 1) are significantly reduced as such particles are collected by gas drag and gas gravity into coherent filament-like structures with densities high enough to trigger gravitational collapse. First-generation planetesimals may form via gravitational instability of dust in marginally gravitationally unstable gas discs.

  11. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-01-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen.

  12. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-01-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen. PMID:27622274

  13. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-01-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen. PMID:27622274

  14. Two-dimensional artificial light-harvesting antennae with predesigned high-order structure and robust photosensitising activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Xiao; Ding, Xuesong; Chen, Long; Wu, Yang; Liu, Lili; Addicoat, Matthew; Irle, Stephan; Dong, Yuping; Jiang, Donglin

    2016-09-01

    Highly ordered discrete assemblies of chlorophylls that are found in natural light-harvesting antennae are key to photosynthesis, which converts light energy to chemical energy and is the principal producer of organic matter on Earth. Porphyrins and phthalocyanines, which are analogues of chlorophylls, exhibit a strong absorbance of visible and near-infrared light, respectively. A highly ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae would harvest photons over the entire solar spectrum for chemical transformation. However, such a robust antennae has not yet been synthesised. Herein, we report a strategy that merges covalent bonds and noncovalent forces to produce highly ordered two-dimensional porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine antennae. This methodology enables control over the stoichiometry and order of the porphyrin and phthalocyanine units; more importantly, this approach is compatible with various metalloporphyrin and metallophthalocyanine derivatives and thus may lead to the generation of a broad structural diversity of two-dimensional artificial antennae. These ordered porphyrin-co-phthalocyanine two-dimensional antennae exhibit unique optical properties and catalytic functions that are not available with single-component or non-structured materials. These 2D artificial antennae exhibit exceptional light-harvesting capacity over the entire solar spectrum as a result of a synergistic light-absorption effect. In addition, they exhibit outstanding photosensitising activities in using both visible and near-infrared photons for producing singlet oxygen.

  15. Artificial rheotaxis

    PubMed Central

    Palacci, Jérémie; Sacanna, Stefano; Abramian, Anaïs; Barral, Jérémie; Hanson, Kasey; Grosberg, Alexander Y.; Pine, David J.; Chaikin, Paul M.

    2015-01-01

    Motility is a basic feature of living microorganisms, and how it works is often determined by environmental cues. Recent efforts have focused on developing artificial systems that can mimic microorganisms, in particular their self-propulsion. We report on the design and characterization of synthetic self-propelled particles that migrate upstream, known as positive rheotaxis. This phenomenon results from a purely physical mechanism involving the interplay between the polarity of the particles and their alignment by a viscous torque. We show quantitative agreement between experimental data and a simple model of an overdamped Brownian pendulum. The model notably predicts the existence of a stagnation point in a diverging flow. We take advantage of this property to demonstrate that our active particles can sense and predictably organize in an imposed flow. Our colloidal system represents an important step toward the realization of biomimetic microsystems with the ability to sense and respond to environmental changes. PMID:26601175

  16. Removal effectiveness and mechanisms of naphthalene and heavy metals from artificially contaminated soil by iron chelate-activated persulfate.

    PubMed

    Yan, Dickson Y S; Lo, Irene M C

    2013-07-01

    The effectiveness and mechanisms of naphthalene and metal removal from artificially contaminated soil by FeEDTA/FeEDDS-activated persulfate were investigated through batch experiments. Using FeEDTA-activated persulfate, higher naphthalene removal from the soil at 7 h was achieved (89%), compared with FeEDDS-activated persulfate (75%). The removal was mainly via the dissolution of naphthalene partitioned on mineral surfaces, followed by activated persulfate oxidation. Although EDDS is advantageous over EDTA in terms of biodegradability, it is not preferable for iron chelate-activated persulfate oxidation since persulfate was consumed to oxidize EDDS, resulting in persulfate inadequacy for naphthalene oxidation. Besides, 55 and 40% of naphthalene were removed by FeEDTA and FeEDDS alone, respectively. Particularly, 21 and 9% of naphthalene were degraded in the presence of FeEDTA and FeEDDS alone, respectively, which caused by electrons transfer among dissolved organic matter, Fe(2+)/Fe(3+) and naphthalene. Over 35, 36 and 45% of Cu, Pb and Zn were removed using FeEDTA/FeEDDS-activated persulfate.

  17. Disc edge veins of Kraupa associated with optic disc drusen

    PubMed Central

    Díaz, Andrea; Almela, Miguel Angel

    2014-01-01

    Objective: Disc edge veins of Kraupa are a rare anomaly of the retinal venous system in which the main trunk of the retinal vein disappeared into the margin of the optic disc instead of its centre. Methods: A 40-year-old woman was detected to have an anomaly in her left optic disc in a routine eye examination. The eyes had an anomaly of the retinal venous system in which all branches of the retinal vein joined in a common trunk that entered the disc margin inferonasally. The central retinal artery issued from the centre of the disc separately of the venous system. B-scan ultrasonografhy revealed the presence of hyperechoic imaging at the optic nerve head in both eyes. Results: We describe the association of disc edge veins of Kraupa with optic disc drusen. Conclusion: Vascular complications of optic disc drusen hav been described. We don’t know the implication of disc edge veins in the pathogenesis of these complications.

  18. Strong effect of the cluster environment on the size of protoplanetary discs?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vincke, Kirsten; Breslau, Andreas; Pfalzner, Susanne

    2015-05-01

    Context. Most stars are born in clusters, thus the protoplanetary discs surrounding the newly formed stars might be influenced by this environment. Isolated star-disc encounters have previously been studied, and it was shown that very close encounters are necessary to completely destroy discs. However, relatively distant encounters are still able to change the disc size considerably. Aims: We quantify the importance of disc-size reduction that is due to stellar encounters in an entire stellar population. Methods: We modelled young, massive clusters of different densities using the code Nbody6 to determine the statistics of stellar encounter parameters. In a second step, we used these parameters to investigate the effect of the environments on the disc size. For this purpose, we performed a numerical experiment with an artificial initial disc size of 105 AU. Results: We quantify to which degree the disc size is more sensitive to the cluster environment than to the disc mass or frequency. We show that in all investigated clusters a large portion of discs is significantly reduced in size. After 5 Myr, the fraction of discs smaller than 1000 AU in ONC-like clusters with an average number density of ̅ρcluster ~ 60pc-3, the fraction of discs smaller than 1000 AU is 65%, while discs smaller than 100 AU make up 15%. These fractions increase to 84% and 39% for discs in denser clusters like IC 348 (̅ρcluster ~ 500pc-3). Even in clusters with a density four times lower than in the ONC (̅ρcluster ~ 15pc-3), about 43% of all discs are reduced to sizes below 1000 AU and roughly 9% to sizes below 100 AU. Conclusions: For any disc in the ONC that initially was larger than 1000 AU, the probability to be truncated to smaller disc sizes as a result of stellar encounters is quite high. Thus, among other effects, encounters are important in shaping discs and potentially forming planetary systems in stellar clusters.

  19. Is artificial recharge promoting microbial activity and biodegradation processes in groundwater systems?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barba Ferrer, Carme; Folch, Albert; Gaju, Núria; Martínez-Alonso, Maira; Carrasquilla, Marc; Grau-Martínez, Alba; Sanchez-Vila, Xavier

    2016-04-01

    Managed Artificial Recharge (MAR) represents a strategic tool for managing water resources, especially during scarce periods. On one hand, it can increase water stored in aquifers and extract it when weather conditions do not permit exclusive exploitation of surface resources. On the other, it allows improve water quality due the processes occurring into the soil whereas water crosses vadose zone. Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain) conurbation is suffering significant quantitative and qualitative groundwater disturbances. For this reason, Sant Vicenç MAR system, constituted by a sedimentation and an infiltration pond, was constructed in 2009 as the strategic water management infrastructure. Compared with other MAR facilities, this infiltration pond has a reactive bed formed by organic compost and local material. The objective is to promote different redox states allowing more and different degradation of chemical compounds than regular MAR systems. In previous studies in the site, physical and hydrochemical parameters demonstrated that there was indeed a degradation of different pollutants. However, to go a step further understanding the different biogeochemical processes and the related degradation processes occurring in the system, we studied the existing microbial communities. So, molecular techniques were applied in water and soil samples in two different scenarios; the first one, when the system was fully operating and the second when the system was not operating during some months. We have specifically compared microbial diversity and richness indexes and both cluster dendrograms obtained from DGGEs analysis made in each sampling campaign.

  20. Effectiveness of Photogem® activated by LED on the decontamination of artificial carious bovine dentin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giusti, J. S. M.; Santos-Pinto, L.; Pizzolitto, A. C.; Kurachi, C.; Bagnato, V. S.

    2006-05-01

    The aim of this study was the evaluation of the effectiveness of photodynamic therapy on the decontamination of artificially induced carious bovine dentin, using Photogem® as the photosensitizer agent and an LED device as a light source. Dentin samples obtained from bovine incisors were immersed in sterile broth supplemented by Lactobacillus acidophillus 108 colony formation units (CFU) and Streptococcus mutans 108 CFU. Different concentrations of photosensitizer, PA = 1 mg/ml, PB = 2 mg/ml, and PC = 3 mg/ml, and two fluences, D = 24 J/cm2 and D = 48 J/cm2, were investigated. After CFU counting per milligram of carious dentin and statistical analysis, we observed that the photodynamic therapy (PDT) parameters used were effective for bacterial reduction in the in vitro model under study. The best result was achieved with the application of Photogem® at 2 mg/ml and photoactivated under 24 J/cm2 showing a survival factor of 0.14. At higher photosensitizer concentrations, a higher dark toxicity was observed. We propose a simple mathematical expression for the determination of PDT parameters of photosensitizer concentration and light fluence for different survival factor values. Since LED devices are simpler and cheaper compared to laser systems, it would be interesting to verify their efficacy as a light source in photodynamic therapy for the decontamination of carious dentin.

  1. Heat distribution in disc brake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klimenda, Frantisek; Soukup, Josef; Kampo, Jan

    2016-06-01

    This article is deals by the thermal analysis of the disc brake with floating caliper. The issue is solved by numerically. The half 2D model is used for solution in program ADINA 8.8. Two brake discs without the ventilation are solved. One disc is made from cast iron and the second is made from stainless steel. Both materials are an isotropic. By acting the pressure force on the brake pads will be pressing the pads to the brake disc. Speed will be reduced (slowing down). On the contact surface generates the heat, which the disc and pads heats. In the next part of article is comparison the maximum temperature at the time of braking. The temperatures of both materials for brake disc (gray cast iron, stainless steel) are compares. The heat flux during braking for the both materials is shown.

  2. Edge-on thick discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kasparova, A.; Katkov, I.; Chilingarian, I.; Silchenko, O.; Moiseev, A.; Borisov, S.

    2016-06-01

    Although thick stellar discs are detected in nearly all edge-on disc galaxies, their formation scenarios still remain a matter of debate. Due to observational difficulties, there is a lack of information about their stellar populations. Using the Russian 6-m telescope BTA we collected deep spectra of thick discs in three edge-on early-type disc galaxies located in different environments: NGC4111 in a dense group, NGC4710 in the Virgo cluster, and NGC5422 in a sparse group. We see intermediate age (4 ‑ 5 Gyr) metal rich ([Fe/H] ~ ‑0.2 ‑ 0.0 dex) stellar populations in NGC4111 and NGC4710. On the other hand, NGC5422 does not harbour young stars, its only disc is thick and old (10 Gyr) and its α-element abundance suggests a long formation epoch implying its formation at high redshift. Our results prove the diversity of thick disc formation scenarios.

  3. Enclosed rotary disc air pulser

    DOEpatents

    Olson, A. L.; Batcheller, Tom A.; Rindfleisch, J. A.; Morgan, John M.

    1989-01-01

    An enclosed rotary disc air pulser for use with a solvent extraction pulse olumn includes a housing having inlet, exhaust and pulse leg ports, a shaft mounted in the housing and adapted for axial rotation therein, first and second disc members secured to the shaft within the housing in spaced relation to each other to define a chamber therebetween, the chamber being in communication with the pulse leg port, the first disc member located adjacent the inlet port, the second disc member being located adjacent the exhaust port, each disc member having a milled out portion, the disc members positioned on the shaft so that as the shaft rotates, the milled out portions permit alternative cyclical communication between the inlet port and the chamber and the exhaust port and the chamber.

  4. Total disc replacement surgery for symptomatic degenerative lumbar disc disease: a systematic review of the literature

    PubMed Central

    van den Eerenbeemt, Karin D.; van Royen, Barend J.; Peul, Wilco C.; van Tulder, Maurits W.

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of total disc replacement surgery compared with spinal fusion in patients with symptomatic lumbar disc degeneration. Low back pain (LBP), a major health problem in Western countries, can be caused by a variety of pathologies, one of which is degenerative disc disease (DDD). When conservative treatment fails, surgery might be considered. For a long time, lumbar fusion has been the “gold standard” of surgical treatment for DDD. Total disc replacement (TDR) has increased in popularity as an alternative for lumbar fusion. A comprehensive systematic literature search was performed up to October 2008. Two reviewers independently checked all retrieved titles and abstracts, and relevant full text articles for inclusion. Two reviewers independently assessed the risk of bias of included studies and extracted relevant data and outcomes. Three randomized controlled trials and 16 prospective cohort studies were identified. In all three trials, the total disc replacement was compared with lumbar fusion techniques. The Charité trial (designed as a non-inferiority trail) was considered to have a low risk of bias for the 2-year follow up, but a high risk of bias for the 5-year follow up. The Charité artificial disc was non-inferior to the BAK® Interbody Fusion System on a composite outcome of “clinical success” (57.1 vs. 46.5%, for the 2-year follow up; 57.8 vs. 51.2% for the 5-year follow up). There were no statistically significant differences in mean pain and physical function scores. The Prodisc artificial disc (also designed as a non-inferiority trail) was found to be statistically significant more effective when compared with the lumbar circumferential fusion on the composite outcome of “clinical success” (53.4 vs. 40.8%), but the risk of bias of this study was high. Moreover, there were no statistically significant differences in mean pain and physical function scores. The Flexicore trial

  5. Clustering of T cell ligands on artificial APC membranes influences T cell activation and protein kinase C theta translocation to the T cell plasma membrane.

    PubMed

    Giannoni, Francesca; Barnett, Joellen; Bi, Kun; Samodal, Rodrigo; Lanza, Paola; Marchese, Patrizia; Billetta, Rosario; Vita, Randi; Klein, Mark R; Prakken, Berent; Kwok, William W; Sercarz, Eli; Altman, Amnon; Albani, Salvatore

    2005-03-15

    T cell activation is associated with active clustering of relevant molecules in membrane microdomains defined as the supramolecular activation cluster. The contact area between these regions on the surface of T cells and APC is defined as the immunological synapse. It has been recently shown that preclustering of MHC-peptide complexes in membrane microdomains on the APC surface affects the efficiency of immune synapse formation and the related T cell activation. Disruption of such clusters may reduce the efficiency of stimulation. We describe here an entirely artificial system for Ag-specific, ex vivo stimulation of human polyclonal T cells (artificial APC (aAPC)). aAPC are based on artificial membrane bilayers containing discrete membrane microdomains encompassing T cell ligands (i.e., appropriate MHC-peptide complexes in association with costimulatory molecules). We show here that preclustering of T cell ligands triggered a degree of T cell activation significantly higher than the one achieved when we used either soluble tetramers or aAPC in which MHC-peptide complexes were uniformly distributed within artificial bilayer membranes. This increased efficiency in stimulation was mirrored by increased translocation from the cytoplasm to the membrane of protein kinase theta, a T cell signaling molecule that colocalizes with the TCR within the supramolecular activation cluster, thus indicating efficient engagement of T cell activation pathways. Engineered aAPC may have immediate application for basic and clinical immunology studies pertaining to modulation of T cells ex vivo.

  6. Hourly photosynthetically active radiation estimation in Midwestern United States from artificial neural networks and conventional regressions models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Xiaolei; Guo, Xulin

    2016-08-01

    The relationship between hourly photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) and the global solar radiation ( R s ) was analyzed from data gathered over 3 years at Bondville, IL, and Sioux Falls, SD, Midwestern USA. These data were used to determine temporal variability of the PAR fraction and its dependence on different sky conditions, which were defined by the clearness index. Meanwhile, models based on artificial neural networks (ANNs) were established for predicting hourly PAR. The performance of the proposed models was compared with four existing conventional regression models in terms of the normalized root mean square error (NRMSE), the coefficient of determination ( r 2), the mean percentage error (MPE), and the relative standard error (RSE). From the overall analysis, it shows that the ANN model can predict PAR accurately, especially for overcast sky and clear sky conditions. Meanwhile, the parameters related to water vapor do not improve the prediction result significantly.

  7. The presence of complete but masked freezing nuclei in various artificially constructed ice nucleation-active proteobacteria.

    PubMed

    Yankofsky, S A; Nadler, T; Kaplan, H

    1997-05-01

    Disparate gamma-subdivision proteobacteria artificially endowed with the same ice gene of enteric origin acquired water-freezing potential at -12 degrees C, but expressed it to varying extents under identical conditions of culture as well as after being subjected to certain post-culture treatments. Varying rates of cell-bound ice nucleus synthesis were probably not the root cause of these observed interspecies differences in nucleation-active cell frequency because potentially functional but masked ice-forming templates were found in the outer cell envelope of even initially inactive individuals taken from physiologically uniform populations of virtually all tested species. We therefore propose that the extent of bacterial ice nucleation generally reflects species-specified extent of ice nucleus sequestration. PMID:9099634

  8. Numbered nasal discs for waterfowl

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartonek, J.C.; Dane, C.W.

    1964-01-01

    Numbered nasal discs were successfully used in studies requiring large numbers of individually marked waterfowl. The procedure for constructing these discs is outlined. Blue-winged teal (Anas discors) with 5/8-inch discs, and canvasback (Aythya valisineria) and redhead (A. americana) with 3/4-inch discs can be individually identified up to 50 and 80 yards, respectively, with a gunstock-mounted, 20-power spotting scope. The particular value of these markers is their durability, the number of combinations possible, and the apparent absence of behavioral or mortality influence among such species as the blue-winged teal.

  9. 26 CFR 1.6011-2 - Returns, etc., of DISC's and former DISC's.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 13 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Returns, etc., of DISC's and former DISC's. 1.6011-2 Section 1.6011-2 Internal Revenue INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY...., of DISC's and former DISC's. (a) Records and information. Every DISC and former DISC (as defined...

  10. On the convective overstability in protoplanetary discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Latter, Henrik N.

    2016-01-01

    This paper explores the driving of low-level hydrodynamical activity in protoplanetary-disc dead zones. A small adverse radial entropy gradient, ordinarily stabilized by rotation, excites oscillatory convection (`convective overstability') when thermal diffusion, or cooling, is neither too strong nor too weak. I revisit the linear theory of the instability, discuss its prevalence in protoplanetary discs, and show that unstable modes are exact non-linear solutions in the local Boussinesq limit. Overstable modes cannot grow indefinitely, however, as they are subject to a secondary parametric instability that limits their amplitudes to relatively low levels. If parasites set the saturation level of the ensuing turbulence then the convective overstability is probably too weak to drive significant angular momentum transport or to generate vortices. But I also discuss an alternative, and far more vigorous, saturation route that generates radial `layers' or `zonal flows' (witnessed in semiconvection). Numerical simulations are required to determine which outcome is favoured in realistic discs, and consequently how important the instability is for disc dynamics.

  11. Artificial intelligence

    SciTech Connect

    Firschein, O.

    1984-01-01

    This book presents papers on artificial intelligence. Topics considered include knowledge engineering, expert systems, applications of artificial intelligence to scientific reasoning, planning and problem solving, error recovery in robots through failure reason analysis, programming languages, natural language, speech recognition, map-guided interpretation of remotely-sensed imagery, and image understanding architectures.

  12. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thornburg, David D.

    1986-01-01

    Overview of the artificial intelligence (AI) field provides a definition; discusses past research and areas of future research; describes the design, functions, and capabilities of expert systems and the "Turing Test" for machine intelligence; and lists additional sources for information on artificial intelligence. Languages of AI are also briefly…

  13. Application of artificial neural network in precise prediction of cement elements percentages based on the neutron activation analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eftekhari Zadeh, E.; Feghhi, S. A. H.; Roshani, G. H.; Rezaei, A.

    2016-05-01

    Due to variation of neutron energy spectrum in the target sample during the activation process and to peak overlapping caused by the Compton effect with gamma radiations emitted from activated elements, which results in background changes and consequently complex gamma spectrum during the measurement process, quantitative analysis will ultimately be problematic. Since there is no simple analytical correlation between peaks' counts with elements' concentrations, an artificial neural network for analyzing spectra can be a helpful tool. This work describes a study on the application of a neural network to determine the percentages of cement elements (mainly Ca, Si, Al, and Fe) using the neutron capture delayed gamma-ray spectra of the substance emitted by the activated nuclei as patterns which were simulated via the Monte Carlo N-particle transport code, version 2.7. The Radial Basis Function (RBF) network is developed with four specific peaks related to Ca, Si, Al and Fe, which were extracted as inputs. The proposed RBF model is developed and trained with MATLAB 7.8 software. To obtain the optimal RBF model, several structures have been constructed and tested. The comparison between simulated and predicted values using the proposed RBF model shows that there is a good agreement between them.

  14. Novel localized heating technique on centrifugal microfluidic disc with wireless temperature monitoring system.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Karunan; Ibrahim, Fatimah; Cho, Jongman

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in the field of centrifugal microfluidic disc suggest the need for electrical interface in the disc to perform active biomedical assays. In this paper, we have demonstrated an active application powered by the energy harvested from the rotation of the centrifugal microfluidic disc. A novel integration of power harvester disc onto centrifugal microfluidic disc to perform localized heating technique is the main idea of our paper. The power harvester disc utilizing electromagnetic induction mechanism generates electrical energy from the rotation of the disc. This contributes to the heat generation by the embedded heater on the localized heating disc. The main characteristic observed in our experiment is the heating pattern in relative to the rotation of the disc. The heating pattern is monitored wirelessly with a digital temperature sensing system also embedded on the disc. Maximum temperature achieved is 82 °C at rotational speed of 2000 RPM. The technique proves to be effective for continuous heating without the need to stop the centrifugal motion of the disc.

  15. Novel localized heating technique on centrifugal microfluidic disc with wireless temperature monitoring system.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Karunan; Ibrahim, Fatimah; Cho, Jongman

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in the field of centrifugal microfluidic disc suggest the need for electrical interface in the disc to perform active biomedical assays. In this paper, we have demonstrated an active application powered by the energy harvested from the rotation of the centrifugal microfluidic disc. A novel integration of power harvester disc onto centrifugal microfluidic disc to perform localized heating technique is the main idea of our paper. The power harvester disc utilizing electromagnetic induction mechanism generates electrical energy from the rotation of the disc. This contributes to the heat generation by the embedded heater on the localized heating disc. The main characteristic observed in our experiment is the heating pattern in relative to the rotation of the disc. The heating pattern is monitored wirelessly with a digital temperature sensing system also embedded on the disc. Maximum temperature achieved is 82 °C at rotational speed of 2000 RPM. The technique proves to be effective for continuous heating without the need to stop the centrifugal motion of the disc. PMID:26736977

  16. Artificial CSF motion ensures rhythmic activity in the developing CNS ex vivo: a mechanical source of rhythmogenesis?

    PubMed

    Yvert, Blaise; Mazzocco, Claire; Joucla, Sébastien; Langla, Adeline; Meyrand, Pierre

    2011-06-15

    Spontaneous rhythmic activity is a ubiquitous feature of developing neural structures that has been shown to be essential for the establishment of functional CNS connectivity. However, the primordial origin of these rhythms remains unknown. Here, we describe two types of rhythmic activity in distinct parts of the developing CNS isolated ex vivo on microelectrode arrays, the expression of which was found to be strictly dependent upon the movement of the artificial CSF (aCSF) flowing over the inner wall of the ventricles or over the outer surface of the CNS. First, whole embryonic mouse hindbrain-spinal cord preparations (stages E12.5-E15.5) rhythmically expressed waves of activity originating in the hindbrain and propagating in the spinal cord. Interestingly enough, the frequency of this rhythm was completely determined by the speed of the aCSF flow. In particular, at all stages considered, hindbrain activity was abolished when the perfusion was stopped. Immature rhythmic activity was also recorded in the isolated newborn (P0-P8) mouse cortex under normal aCSF perfusion. Again, this rhythm was abolished when the perfusion flow was stopped. In both structures, this phenomenon was not due to changes in temperature, oxygen level, or pH of the bath, but to the movement itself of the aCSF. These observations challenge the so-called "spontaneous" nature of rhythmic activity in immature neural networks and suggest that the movement of CSF in the ventricles and around the brain in vivo may mechanically drive rhythmogenesis in the developing CNS. PMID:21677167

  17. Radicular interdural lumbar disc herniation.

    PubMed

    Akhaddar, Ali; Boulahroud, Omar; Elasri, Abad; Elmostarchid, Brahim; Boucetta, Mohammed

    2010-07-01

    Intraradicular lumbar disc herniation is a rare complication of disc disease that is generally diagnosed only during surgery. The mechanism for herniated disc penetration into the intradural space is not known with certainty, but adhesion between the radicular dura and the posterior longitudinal ligament was suggested as the most important condition. The authors report the first case of an intraradicular lumbar disc herniation without subdural penetration; the disc hernia was lodged between the two radicular dura layers. The patient, a 34-year-old soldier, was admitted with a 12-month history of low back pain and episodic left sciatica. Neurologic examination showed a positive straight leg raising test on the left side without sensory, motor or sphincter disturbances. Spinal CT scan and MRI exploration revealed a left posterolateral osteophyte formation at the L5-S1 level with an irregular large disc herniation, which migrated superiorly. An intradural extension was suspected. A left L5 hemilaminectomy and S1 foraminotomy were performed. The exploration revealed a large fragment of disc material located between the inner and outer layers of the left S1 radicular dura. The mass was extirpated without cerebrospinal fluid outflow. The postoperative course was uneventful. Radicular interdural lumbar disc herniation should be suspected when a swollen, hard and immobile nerve root is present intraoperatively.

  18. Evolution of gas in debris discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kral, Quentin; Wyatt, Mark; Pringle, Jim

    2015-12-01

    A non negligible quantity of gas has been discovered in an increasing number of debris disc systems. ALMA high sensitivity and high resolution is changing our perception of the gaseous component of debris discs as CO is discovered in systems where it should be rapidly photodissociated. It implies that there is a replenishment mechanism and that the observed gas is secondary. Past missions such as Herschel probed the atomic part of the gas through O I and C II emission lines. Gas science in debris discs is still in its infancy, and these new observations raise a handful of questions concerning the mechanisms to create the gas and about its evolution in the planetary system when it is released. The latter question will be addressed in this talk as a self-consistent gas evolution scenario is proposed and is compared to observations for the peculiar case of β Pictoris.Our model proposes that carbon and oxygen within debris discs are created due to photodissociation of CO which is itself created from the debris disc dust (due to grain-grain collisions or photodesorption). The evolution of the carbon atoms is modelled as viscous spreading, with viscosity parameterised using an α model. The temperature, ionisation fraction and population levels of carbon are followed with a PDR model called Cloudy, which is coupled to the dynamical viscous α model. Only carbon gets ionised due to its lower ionisation potential than oxygen. The carbon gas disc can end up with a high ionisation fraction due to strong FUV radiation field. A high ionisation fraction means that the magnetorotational instability (MRI) is very active, so that α is very high. Gas density profiles can be worked out for different input parameters such as the α value, the CO input rate, the location of the input and the incoming radiation field. Observability predictions can be made for future observations, and our model is tested on β Pictoris observations. This new gas evolution model fits the carbon and CO

  19. On the vertical-shear instability in astrophysical discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barker, A. J.; Latter, H. N.

    2015-06-01

    We explore the linear stability of astrophysical discs exhibiting vertical shear, which arises when there is a radial variation in the temperature or entropy. Such discs are subject to a `vertical-shear instability', which recent non-linear simulations have shown to drive hydrodynamic activity in the MRI-stable regions of protoplanetary discs. We first revisit locally isothermal discs using the quasi-global reduced model derived by Nelson et al. This analysis is then extended to global axisymmetric perturbations in a cylindrical domain. We also derive and study a reduced model describing discs with power-law radial entropy profiles (`locally polytropic discs'), which are somewhat more realistic in that they possess physical (as opposed to numerical) surfaces. The fastest growing modes have very short wavelengths and are localized at the disc surfaces (if present), where the vertical shear is maximal. An additional class of modestly growing vertically global body modes is excited, corresponding to destabilized classical inertial waves (`r modes'). We discuss the properties of both types of modes, and stress that those that grow fastest occur on the shortest available length-scales (determined either by the numerical grid or the physical viscous length). This ill-posedness makes simulations of the instability difficult to interpret. We end with some brief speculation on the non-linear saturation and resulting angular momentum transport.

  20. Disc-based microarrays: principles and analytical applications.

    PubMed

    Morais, Sergi; Puchades, Rosa; Maquieira, Ángel

    2016-07-01

    The idea of using disk drives to monitor molecular biorecognition events on regular optical discs has received considerable attention during the last decade. CDs, DVDs, Blu-ray discs and other new optical discs are universal and versatile supports with the potential for development of protein and DNA microarrays. Besides, standard disk drives incorporated in personal computers can be used as compact and affordable optical reading devices. Consequently, a CD technology, resulting from the audio-video industry, has been used to develop analytical applications in health care, environmental monitoring, food safety and quality assurance. The review presents and critically evaluates the current state of the art of disc-based microarrays with illustrative examples, including past, current and future developments. Special mention is made of the analytical developments that use either chemically activated or raw standard CDs where proteins, oligonucleotides, peptides, haptens or other biological probes are immobilized. The discs are also used to perform the assays and must maintain their readability with standard optical drives. The concept and principle of evolving disc-based microarrays and the evolution of disk drives as optical detectors are also described. The review concludes with the most relevant uses ordered chronologically to provide an overview of the progress of CD technology applications in the life sciences. Also, it provides a selection of important references to the current literature. Graphical Abstract High density disc-based microarrays. PMID:26922341

  1. Design and Analysis of Hammerhead Ribozyme Activity Against an Artificial Gene Target

    PubMed Central

    Carter, James; Nawtaisong, Pruksa; Balaraman, Velmurugan; Fraser, Malcolm J.

    2014-01-01

    In vitro cleavage assays are routinely conducted to properly assess the catalytic activity of hammerhead ribozymes (HHR) against target RNA molecules like the dengue virus RNA genomes. These experiments are performed for initial assessment of HHR catalysis in a cell-free system and have been simplified by the substitution of agarose gel electrophoresis for SDS-PAGE. Substituting mobility assays enables the analysis of ribozymes in a more rapid fashion without radioisotopes. Here we describe the in vitro transcription of an HHR and corresponding target from T7-promoted plasmids into RNA molecules leading to the analysis of HHR activity against the RNA target by in vitro cleavage assays. PMID:24318886

  2. Selection of a suitable disc bioassay for the screening of anti-tumor molecules.

    PubMed

    Trigui, Fatma; Pigeon, Pascal; Jalleli, Karim; Top, Siden; Aifa, Sami; El Arbi, Mehdi

    2013-12-01

    The crown gall induced in potato discs by Agrobacterium tumefaciens is becoming largely utilised in screening anti-tumor agents. The present work is showing that beet discs are more adequate for the anti-tumor screening test. In fact, maximal tumor induction was observed on beet discs (87.5%), followed by carrot discs (75%) and potato discs (68.5%). Beet discs present the most sensibility to crown gall disease with a fast expression of symptoms and more visible galls without any staining need. The beet discs bioassay was carried out by using some synthesized organometallics known for their antitumor activity in mammalian cells. We found significant crown gall inhibition (20.7% to 40.55%) of the tested compounds. Overall results supported that beet bioassay might be a potential prescreen system of anti-tumor molecules in mammalian cells. PMID:24711759

  3. Selection of a Suitable Disc Bioassay for the Screening of Anti-Tumor Molecules

    PubMed Central

    Trigui, Fatma; Pigeon, Pascal; Jalleli, Karim; Top, Siden; Aifa, Sami; El Arbi, Mehdi

    2013-01-01

    The crown gall induced in potato discs by Agrobacterium tumefaciens is becoming largely utilised in screening anti-tumor agents. The present work is showing that beet discs are more adequate for the anti-tumor screening test. In fact, maximal tumor induction was observed on beet discs (87.5%), followed by carrot discs (75%) and potato discs (68.5%). Beet discs present the most sensibility to crown gall disease with a fast expression of symptoms and more visible galls without any staining need. The beet discs bioassay was carried out by using some synthesized organometallics known for their antitumor activity in mammalian cells. We found significant crown gall inhibition (20.7% to 40.55%) of the tested compounds. Overall results supported that beet bioassay might be a potential prescreen system of anti-tumor molecules in mammalian cells. PMID:24711759

  4. Three-dimentional simulation of flow-induced platelet activation in artificial heart valves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hedayat, Mohammadali; Asgharzadeh, Hafez; Borazjani, Iman

    2015-11-01

    Since the advent of heart valve, several valve types such as mechanical and bio-prosthetic valves have been designed. Mechanical Heart Valves (MHV) are durable but suffer from thromboembolic complications that caused by shear-induced platelet activation near the valve region. Bio-prosthetic Heart Valves (BHV) are known for better hemodynamics. However, they usually have a short average life time. Realistic simulations of heart valves in combination with platelet activation models can lead to a better understanding of the potential risk of thrombus formation in such devices. In this study, an Eulerian approach is developed to calculate the platelet activation in three-dimensional simulations of flow through MHV and BHV using a parallel overset-curvilinear immersed boundary technique. A curvilinear body-fitted grid is used for the flow simulation through the anatomic aorta, while the sharp-interface immersed boundary method is used for simulation of the Left Ventricle (LV) with prescribed motion. In addition, dynamics of valves were calculated numerically using under-relaxed strong-coupling algorithm. Finally, the platelet activation results for BMV and MHV are compared with each other.

  5. Modification of soil microbial activity and several hydrolases in a forest soil artificially contaminated with copper

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellas, Rosa; Leirós, Mā Carmen; Gil-Sotres, Fernando; Trasar-Cepeda, Carmen

    2010-05-01

    Soils have long been exposed to the adverse effects of human activities, which negatively affect soil biological activity. As a result of their functions and ubiquitous presence microorganisms can serve as environmental indicators of soil pollution. Some features of soil microorganisms, such as the microbial biomass size, respiration rate, and enzyme activity are often used as bioindicators of the ecotoxicity of heavy metals. Although copper is essential for microorganisms, excessive concentrations have a negative influence on processes mediated by microorganisms. In this study we measured the response of some microbial indicators to Cu pollution in a forest soil, with the aim of evaluating their potential for predicting Cu contamination. Samples of an Ah horizon from a forest soil under oakwood vegetation (Quercus robur L.) were contaminated in the laboratory with copper added at different doses (0, 120, 360, 1080 and 3240 mg kg-1) as CuCl2×2H2O. The soil samples were kept for 7 days at 25 °C and at a moisture content corresponding to the water holding capacity, and thereafter were analysed for carbon and nitrogen mineralization capacity, microbial biomass C, seed germination and root elongation tests, and for urease, phosphomonoesterase, catalase and ß-glucosidase activities. In addition, carbon mineralization kinetics were studied, by plotting the log of residual C against incubation time, and the metabolic coefficient, qCO2, was estimated. Both organic carbon and nitrogen mineralization were lower in polluted samples, with the greatest decrease observed in the sample contaminated with 1080 mg kg-1. In all samples carbon mineralization followed first order kinetics; the C mineralization constant was lower in contaminated than in uncontaminated samples and, in general, decreased with increasing doses of copper. Moreover, it appears that copper contamination not only reduced the N mineralization capacity, but also modified the N mineralization process, since in

  6. Application of artificial neural networks for the soil moisture retrieval from active and passive microwave spaceborne sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santi, Emanuele; Paloscia, Simonetta; Pettinato, Simone; Fontanelli, Giacomo

    2016-06-01

    Among the algorithms used for the retrieval of SMC from microwave sensors (both active, such as Synthetic Aperture Radar-SAR, and passive, radiometers), the artificial neural networks (ANN) represent the best compromise between accuracy and computation speed. ANN based algorithms have been developed at IFAC, and adapted to several radar and radiometric satellite sensors, in order to generate SMC products at a resolution varying from hundreds of meters to tens of kilometers according to the spatial scale of each sensor. These algorithms, which are based on the ANN techniques for inverting theoretical and semi-empirical models, have been adapted to the C- to Ka- band acquisitions from spaceborne radiometers (AMSR-E/AMSR2), SAR (Envisat/ASAR, Cosmo-SkyMed) and real aperture radar (MetOP ASCAT). Large datasets of co-located satellite acquisitions and direct SMC measurements on several test sites worldwide have been used along with simulations derived from forward electromagnetic models for setting up, training and validating these algorithms. An overall quality assessment of the obtained results in terms of accuracy and computational cost was carried out, and the main advantages and limitations for an operational use of these algorithms were evaluated. This technique allowed the retrieval of SMC from both active and passive satellite systems, with accuracy values of about 0.05 m3/m3 of SMC or better, thus making these applications compliant with the usual accuracy requirements for SMC products from space.

  7. A Modified Active Appearance Model Based on an Adaptive Artificial Bee Colony

    PubMed Central

    Othman, Zulaiha Ali

    2014-01-01

    Active appearance model (AAM) is one of the most popular model-based approaches that have been extensively used to extract features by highly accurate modeling of human faces under various physical and environmental circumstances. However, in such active appearance model, fitting the model with original image is a challenging task. State of the art shows that optimization method is applicable to resolve this problem. However, another common problem is applying optimization. Hence, in this paper we propose an AAM based face recognition technique, which is capable of resolving the fitting problem of AAM by introducing a new adaptive ABC algorithm. The adaptation increases the efficiency of fitting as against the conventional ABC algorithm. We have used three datasets: CASIA dataset, property 2.5D face dataset, and UBIRIS v1 images dataset in our experiments. The results have revealed that the proposed face recognition technique has performed effectively, in terms of accuracy of face recognition. PMID:25165748

  8. Tubulin dynamics during the cytoplasmic cohesiveness cycle in artificially activated sea urchin eggs.

    PubMed

    Coffe, G; Foucault, G; Raymond, M N; Pudles, J

    1983-12-01

    Sedimentation studies and [3H]colchicine-binding assays have demonstrated a relationship between the cytoplasmic cohesiveness cycles and the changes in tubulin organization in Paracentrotus lividus eggs activated by 2.5 mM procaine. The same amount of tubulin (20-25% of the total egg tubulin) is involved in these cyclic process and appears to undergo polymerization and depolymerization cycles. Electron microscopy studies reveal that the microtubules formed during these cytoplasmic cohesiveness cycles are under a particulate form which is sedimentable at low speed. Activation experiments carried out in the presence of cytochalasin B (CB) show that the increase in the cytoplasmic cohesiveness is highly reduced while tubulin polymerization and depolymerization cycles and pronuclear centration are not affected. Although tubulin or actin polymerization can be independently triggered in procaine-activated eggs, the increase in cytoplasmic cohesiveness requires the polymerization of both proteins. However, the cytoplasmic cohesiveness cycles appear to be regulated by tubulin polymerization and depolymerization cycles. PMID:6641809

  9. From Neuromuscular Activation to End-point Locomotion: An Artificial Neural Network-based Technique for Neural Prostheses

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Chia-Lin; Jin, Zhanpeng; Chang, Hou-Cheng; Cheng, Allen C.

    2009-01-01

    Neuroprostheses, implantable or non-invasive ones, are promising techniques to enable paralyzed individuals with conditions, such as spinal cord injury or spina bifida (SB), to control their limbs voluntarily. Direct cortical control of invasive neuroprosthetic devices and robotic arms have recently become feasible for primates. However, little is known about designing non-invasive, closed-loop neuromuscular control strategies for neural prostheses. Our goal was to investigate if an Artificial Neural Network-based (ANN-based) model for closed-loop controlled neural prostheses could use neuromuscular activation recorded from individuals with impaired spinal cord to predict their end-point gait parameters (such as stride length and step width). We recruited 12 persons with SB (5 females and 7 males) and collected their neuromuscular activation and end-point gait parameters during overground walking. Our results show that the proposed ANN-based technique can achieve a highly accurate prediction (e.g., R-values of 0.92 – 0.97, ANN (tansig+tansig) for single composition of data sets) for altered end-point locomotion. Compared to traditional robust regression, this technique can provide up to 80% more accurate prediction. Our results suggest that more precise control of complex neural prostheses during locomotion can be achieved by engaging neuromuscular activity as intrinsic feedback to generate end-point leg movement. This ANN-based model allows a seamless incorporation of neuromuscular activity, detected from paralyzed individuals, to adaptively predict their altered gait patterns, which can be employed to provide closed-loop feedback information for neural prostheses. PMID:19389678

  10. A comparison of timed artificial insemination and automated activity monitoring with hormone intervention in 3 commercial dairy herds.

    PubMed

    Dolecheck, K A; Silvia, W J; Heersche, G; Wood, C L; McQuerry, K J; Bewley, J M

    2016-02-01

    The objective of this study was to compare the reproductive performance of cows inseminated based on automated activity monitoring with hormone intervention (AAM) to cows from the same herds inseminated using only an intensive timed artificial insemination (TAI) program. Cows (n=523) from 3 commercial dairy herds participated in this study. To be considered eligible for participation, cows must have been classified with a body condition score of at least 2.50, but no more than 3.50, passed a reproductive tract examination, and experienced no incidences of clinical, recorded metabolic diseases in the current lactation. Within each herd, cows were balanced for parity and predicted milk yield, then randomly assigned to 1 of 2 treatments: TAI or AAM. Cows assigned to the TAI group were subjected to an ovulation synchronization protocol consisting of presynchronization, Ovsynch, and Resynch for up to 3 inseminations. Cows assigned to the AAM treatment were fitted with a leg-mounted accelerometer (AfiAct Pedometer Plus, Afimilk, Kibbutz Afikim, Israel) at least 10 d before the end of the herd voluntary waiting period (VWP). Cows in the AAM treatment were inseminated at times indicated by the automated alert system for up to 90 d after the VWP. If an open cow experienced no AAM alert for a 39±7-d period (beginning at the end of the VWP), hormone intervention in the form of a single injection of either PGF2α or GnRH (no TAI) was permitted as directed by the herd veterinarian. Subsequent to hormone intervention, cows were inseminated when alerted in estrus by the AAM system. Pregnancy was diagnosed by ultrasound 33 to 46 d after insemination. Pregnancy loss was determined via a second ultrasound after 60 d pregnant. Timed artificial insemination cows experienced a median 11.0 d shorter time to first service. Automated activity-monitored cows experienced a median 17.5-d shorter service interval. No treatment difference in probability of pregnancy to first AI, probability

  11. Central Spindle Self-Organization and Cytokinesis in Artificially Activated Sea Urchin Eggs.

    PubMed

    Henson, John H; Buckley, Mary W; Yeterian, Mesrob; Weeks, Richard M; Simerly, Calvin R; Shuster, Charles B

    2016-04-01

    The ability of microtubules of the mitotic apparatus to control the positioning and initiation of the cleavage furrow during cytokinesis was first established from studies on early echinoderm embryos. However, the identity of the microtubule population that imparts cytokinetic signaling is unclear. The two main--and not necessarily mutually exclusive--candidates are the central spindle and the astral rays. In the present study, we examined cytokinesis in ammonia-activated sea urchin eggs, which lack paternally derived centrosomes and undergo mitosis mediated by unusual anastral, bipolar mini-spindles. Live cell imaging and immunolabeling for microtubules and the centralspindlin constituent and kinesin-related protein, MKLP1, demonstrated that furrowing in ammonia-activated eggs was associated with aligned arrays of centralspindlin-linked, opposed bundles of antiparallel microtubules. These autonomous, zipper-like arrays were not associated with a mitotic apparatus, but did possess characteristics similar to the central spindle region of control, fertilized embryos. Our results highlight the self-organizing nature of the central spindle region and its ability to induce cytokinesis-like furrowing, even in the absence of a complete mitotic apparatus. PMID:27132131

  12. Double-disc gate valve

    DOEpatents

    Wheatley, Seth J.

    1979-01-01

    This invention relates to an improvement in a conventional double-disc gate valve having a vertically movable gate assembly including a wedge, spreaders slidably engaged therewtih, a valve disc carried by the spreaders. When the gate assembly is lowered to a selected point in the valve casing, the valve discs are moved transversely outward to close inlet and outlet ports in the casing. The valve includes hold-down means for guiding the disc-and-spreader assemblies as they are moved transversely outward and inward. If such valves are operated at relatively high differential pressures, they sometimes jam during opening. Such jamming has been a problem for many years in gate valves used in gaseous diffusion plants for the separtion of uranium isotopes. The invention is based on the finding that the above-mentioned jamming results when the outlet disc tilts about its horizontal axis in a certain way during opening of the valve. In accordance with the invention, tilting of the outlet disc is maintained at a tolerable value by providing the disc with a rigid downwardly extending member and by providing the casing with a stop for limiting inward arcuate movement of the member to a preselected value during opening of the valve.

  13. Discs in misaligned binary systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rawiraswattana, Krisada; Hubber, David A.; Goodwin, Simon P.

    2016-08-01

    We perform SPH simulations to study precession and changes in alignment between the circumprimary disc and the binary orbit in misaligned binary systems. We find that the precession process can be described by the rigid-disc approximation, where the disc is considered as a rigid body interacting with the binary companion only gravitationally. Precession also causes change in alignment between the rotational axis of the disc and the spin axis of the primary star. This type of alignment is of great important for explaining the origin of spin-orbit misaligned planetary systems. However, we find that the rigid-disc approximation fails to describe changes in alignment between the disc and the binary orbit. This is because the alignment process is a consequence of interactions that involve the fluidity of the disc, such as the tidal interaction and the encounter interaction. Furthermore, simulation results show that there are not only alignment processes, which bring the components towards alignment, but also anti-alignment processes, which tend to misalign the components. The alignment process dominates in systems with misalignment angle near 90°, while the anti-alignment process dominates in systems with the misalignment angle near 0° or 180°. This means that highly misaligned systems will become more aligned but slightly misaligned systems will become more misaligned.

  14. Active vibration control of flexible cantilever plates using piezoelectric materials and artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdeljaber, Osama; Avci, Onur; Inman, Daniel J.

    2016-02-01

    The study presented in this paper introduces a new intelligent methodology to mitigate the vibration response of flexible cantilever plates. The use of the piezoelectric sensor/actuator pairs for active control of plates is discussed. An intelligent neural network based controller is designed to control the optimal voltage applied on the piezoelectric patches. The control technique utilizes a neurocontroller along with a Kalman Filter to compute the appropriate actuator command. The neurocontroller is trained based on an algorithm that incorporates a set of emulator neural networks which are also trained to predict the future response of the cantilever plate. Then, the neurocontroller is evaluated by comparing the uncontrolled and controlled responses under several types of dynamic excitations. It is observed that the neurocontroller reduced the vibration response of the flexible cantilever plate significantly; the results demonstrated the success and robustness of the neurocontroller independent of the type and distribution of the excitation force.

  15. Artificial selection for high activity favors mighty mini-muscles in house mice.

    PubMed

    Houle-Leroy, Philippe; Guderley, Helga; Swallow, John G; Garland, Theodore

    2003-02-01

    After 14 generations of selection for voluntary wheel running, mice from the four replicate selected lines ran, on average, twice as many revolutions per day as those from the four unselected control lines. To examine whether the selected lines followed distinct strategies in the correlated responses of the size and metabolic capacities of the hindlimb muscles, we examined mice from selected lines, housed for 8 wk in cages with access to running wheels that were either free to rotate ("wheel access" group) or locked ("sedentary"). Thirteen of twenty individuals in one selected line (line 6) and two of twenty in another (line 3) showed a marked reduction ( approximately 50%) in total hindlimb muscle mass, consistent with the previously described expression of a small-muscle phenotype. Individuals with these "mini-muscles" were not significantly smaller in total body mass compared with line-mates with normal-sized muscles. Access to free wheels did not affect the relative mass of the mini-muscles, but did result in typical mammalian training effects for mitochondrial enzyme activities. Individuals with mini-muscles showed a higher mass-specific muscle aerobic capacity as revealed by the maximal in vitro rates of citrate synthase and cytochrome c oxidase. Moreover, these mice showed the highest activities of hexokinase and carnitine palmitoyl transferase. Females with mini-muscles showed the highest levels of phosphofructokinase, and males with mini-muscles the highest levels of pyruvate dehydrogenase. As shown by total muscle enzyme contents, the increase in mass-specific aerobic capacity almost completely compensated for the reduction caused by the "loss" of muscle mass. Moreover, the mini-muscle mice exhibited the lowest contents of lactate dehydrogenase and glycogen phosphorylase. Interestingly, metabolic capacities of mini-muscled mice resemble those of muscles after endurance training. Overall, our results demonstrate that during selection for voluntary wheel

  16. Highly active β-xylosidases of glycoside hydrolase family 43 operating on natural and artificial substrates.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Douglas B; Wagschal, Kurt; Grigorescu, Arabela A; Braker, Jay D

    2013-05-01

    The hemicellulose xylan constitutes a major portion of plant biomass, a renewable feedstock available for conversion to biofuels and other bioproducts. β-xylosidase operates in the deconstruction of the polysaccharide to fermentable sugars. Glycoside hydrolase family 43 is recognized as a source of highly active β-xylosidases, some of which could have practical applications. The biochemical details of four GH43 β-xylosidases (those from Alkaliphilus metalliredigens QYMF, Bacillus pumilus, Bacillus subtilis subsp. subtilis str. 168, and Lactobacillus brevis ATCC 367) are examined here. Sedimentation equilibrium experiments indicate that the quaternary states of three of the enzymes are mixtures of monomers and homodimers (B. pumilus) or mixtures of homodimers and homotetramers (B. subtilis and L. brevis). k cat and k cat/K m values of the four enzymes are higher for xylobiose than for xylotriose, suggesting that the enzyme active sites comprise two subsites, as has been demonstrated by the X-ray structures of other GH43 β-xylosidases. The K i values for D-glucose (83.3-357 mM) and D-xylose (15.6-70.0 mM) of the four enzymes are moderately high. The four enzymes display good temperature (K t (0.5) ∼ 45 °C) and pH stabilities (>4.6 to <10.3). At pH 6.0 and 25 °C, the enzyme from L. brevis ATCC 367 displays the highest reported k cat and k cat/K m on natural substrates xylobiose (407 s(-1), 138 s(-1) mM(-1)), xylotriose (235 s(-1), 80.8 s(-1) mM(-1)), and xylotetraose (146 s(-1), 32.6 s(-1) mM(-1)).

  17. The Influence of Artificially Introduced N-Glycosylation Sites on the In Vitro Activity of Xenopus laevis Erythropoietin

    PubMed Central

    Nagasawa, Kazumichi; Meguro, Mizue; Sato, Kei; Tanizaki, Yuta; Nogawa-Kosaka, Nami; Kato, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    Erythropoietin (EPO), the primary regulator of erythropoiesis, is a heavily glycosylated protein found in humans and several other mammals. Intriguingly, we have previously found that EPO in Xenopus laevis (xlEPO) has no N-glycosylation sites, and cross-reacts with the human EPO (huEPO) receptor despite low homology with huEPO. In this study, we introduced N-glycosylation sites into wild-type xlEPO at the positions homologous to those in huEPO, and tested whether the glycosylated mutein retained its biological activity. Seven xlEPO muteins, containing 1–3 additional N-linked carbohydrates at positions 24, 38, and/or 83, were expressed in COS-1 cells. The muteins exhibited lower secretion efficiency, higher hydrophilicity, and stronger acidic properties than the wild type. All muteins stimulated the proliferation of both cell lines, xlEPO receptor-expressing xlEPOR-FDC/P2 cells and huEPO receptor-expressing UT-7/EPO cells, in a dose-dependent manner. Thus, the muteins retained their in vitro biological activities. The maximum effect on xlEPOR-FDC/P2 proliferation was decreased by the addition of N-linked carbohydrates, but that on UT-7/EPO proliferation was not changed, indicating that the muteins act as partial agonists to the xlEPO receptor, and near-full agonists to the huEPO receptor. Hence, the EPO-EPOR binding site in X. laevis locates the distal region of artificially introduced three N-glycosylation sites, demonstrating that the vital conformation to exert biological activity is conserved between humans and X. laevis, despite the low similarity in primary structures of EPO and EPOR. PMID:25898205

  18. Medical Information on Optical Disc*

    PubMed Central

    Schipma, Peter B.; Cichocki, Edward M.; Ziemer, Susan M.

    1987-01-01

    Optical discs may permit a revolutionary change in the distribution and use of medical information. A single compact disc, similar in size to that used for digital audio recording, can contain over 500 million characters of information that is accessible by a Personal Computer. These discs can be manufactured at a cost lower than that of print on paper, at reasonable volumes. Software can provide the health care professional with nearly instantaneous access to the information. Thus, for the first time, the opportunity exists to have large local medical information collections. This paper describes an application of this technology in the field of Oncology.

  19. Diaphragm paralysis from cervical disc lesions.

    PubMed

    Cloward, R B

    1988-01-01

    An opera singer, who "made her living with her diaphragm", developed a post-traumatic unilateral radiculopathy due to cervical disc lesions, C3 to C6. During one year of severe neck and left arm pain she gradually lost the ability to sing difficult operatic passages which brought an end to her music career. Following a three level anterior cervical decompression and fusion, the neck and arm pain was immediately relieved. One week later her voice and singing ability returned to its full strength and power permitting her to resume her activities as a vocalist. The diagnosis of paresis of the left hemi-diaphragm as part of the cervical disc syndrome was implied by postoperative retrospective inference.

  20. Blocking mechanisms of batrachotoxin-activated Na channels in artificial bilayers.

    PubMed

    Uehara, A; Moczydlowski, E

    1986-01-01

    The effects of various pharmacological agents that block single batrachotoxin-activated Na channels from rat muscle can be described in terms of three modes of action that correspond to at least three different binding sites. Guanidinium toxins such as tetrodotoxin, saxitoxin, and a novel polypeptide, mu-conotoxin GIIIA, act only from the extra-cellular side and induce discrete blocked states that correspond to residence times of individual toxin molecules. Such toxins apparently do not deeply penetrate the channel pore since the voltage dependence of block is insensitive to toxin charge and block is not relieved by internal Na+. Many nonspecific organic cations, including charged anesthetics, exhibit a voltage-dependent block that is enhanced by depolarization when present on the inside of the channel. This site is probably within the pore, but binding to this site is weak, as indicated by fast blockade that often appears as lowered channel conductance. A separate class of neutral and tertiary amine anesthetics such as benzocaine and procaine induce discrete closed states when added to either side of the membrane. This blocking effect can be explained by preferential binding to closed states of the channel and appears to be due to a modulation of channel gating.

  1. Experimental characterization of thermally-activated artificial muscles based on coiled nylon fishing lines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cherubini, Antonello; Moretti, Giacomo; Vertechy, Rocco; Fontana, Marco

    2015-06-01

    The discovery of an innovative class of thermally activated actuators based on twisted polymeric fibres has opened new horizons toward the development of effective devices that can be easily manufactured using inexpensive materials such as fishing lines or sewing threads. These new devices show large deformations when heated together with promising performance in terms of energy and power densities. With the aim of providing information and data useful for the future engineering applications, we present the results of a thermo-mechanical characterization conducted on a specific type of twisted polymeric fibre (i.e. nylon-made coiled actuators) that is considered particularly promising. A custom experimental test-bench and procedure have been developed and employed to run isothermal and isometric tensile tests on a set of specimens that are fabricated with a simple and repeatable process. The results of the experiments highlight some important issues related to the response of these actuators such as hysteresis, repeatability, predictability and stored elastic energy.

  2. Carbonic anhydrase immobilized on hollow fiber membranes using glutaraldehyde activated chitosan for artificial lung applications

    PubMed Central

    Kimmel, J. D.; Arazawa, D. T.; Ye, S.-H.; Shankarraman, V.; Wagner, W. R.

    2013-01-01

    Extracorporeal CO2 removal from circulating blood is a promising therapeutic modality for the treatment of acute respiratory failure. The enzyme carbonic anhydrase accelerates CO2 removal within gas exchange devices by locally catalyzing HCO3− into gaseous CO2 within the blood. In this work, we covalently immobilized carbonic anhydrase on the surface of polypropylene hollow fiber membranes using glutaraldehyde activated chitosan tethering to amplify the density of reactive amine functional groups for enzyme immobilization. XPS and a colorimetric amine assay confirmed higher amine densities on the chitosan coated fiber compared to control fiber. Chitosan/CA coated fibers exhibited accelerated CO2 removal in scaled-down gas exchange devices in buffer and blood (115 % enhancement vs. control, 37 % enhancement vs. control, respectively). Carbonic anhydrase immobilized directly on hollow fiber membranes without chitosan tethering resulted in no enhancement in CO2 removal. Additionally, fibers coated with chitosan/carbonic anhydrase demonstrated reduced platelet adhesion when exposed to blood compared to control and heparin coated fibers. PMID:23888352

  3. The artificial zinc finger coding gene 'Jazz' binds the utrophin promoter and activates transcription.

    PubMed

    Corbi, N; Libri, V; Fanciulli, M; Tinsley, J M; Davies, K E; Passananti, C

    2000-06-01

    Up-regulation of utrophin gene expression is recognized as a plausible therapeutic approach in the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). We have designed and engineered new zinc finger-based transcription factors capable of binding and activating transcription from the promoter of the dystrophin-related gene, utrophin. Using the recognition 'code' that proposes specific rules between zinc finger primary structure and potential DNA binding sites, we engineered a new gene named 'Jazz' that encodes for a three-zinc finger peptide. Jazz belongs to the Cys2-His2 zinc finger type and was engineered to target the nine base pair DNA sequence: 5'-GCT-GCT-GCG-3', present in the promoter region of both the human and mouse utrophin gene. The entire zinc finger alpha-helix region, containing the amino acid positions that are crucial for DNA binding, was specifically chosen on the basis of the contacts more frequently represented in the available list of the 'code'. Here we demonstrate that Jazz protein binds specifically to the double-stranded DNA target, with a dissociation constant of about 32 nM. Band shift and super-shift experiments confirmed the high affinity and specificity of Jazz protein for its DNA target. Moreover, we show that chimeric proteins, named Gal4-Jazz and Sp1-Jazz, are able to drive the transcription of a test gene from the human utrophin promoter.

  4. Enlivening Physics, a Local Video Disc Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McInerney, M.

    1989-01-01

    Describes how to make and use an inexpensive video disc of physics demonstrations. Discusses the background, production of the disc, subject of the disc including angular momentum, "monkey and the hunter" experiment, Doppler shift, pressure of a constant volume of gas thermometer, and wave effects, and using the disc in classroom. (YP)

  5. Disc pack cleaning table saves computer time

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guy, J. T., Sr.

    1970-01-01

    Disc pack holding table is support frame upon which computer disc pack is loaded and protective cover released. This combination permits manual off-line cleaning of disc pack storage units at any time without shutting down the computer, and eliminates on-line disc drive unit to hold pack during cleaning.

  6. Decellularized allogeneic intervertebral disc: natural biomaterials for regenerating disc degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Zhijun; Chen, Kai; Shan, Zhi; Chen, Shuai; Wang, Jiying; Mo, Jian; Ma, Jianjun; Xu, Wenbing; Qin, An; Fan, Shunwu

    2016-01-01

    Intervertebral disc degeneration is associated with back pain and disc herniation. This study established a modified protocol for intervertebral disc (IVD) decellularization and prepared its extracellular matrix (ECM). By culturing mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs)(3, 7, 14 and 21 days) and human degenerative IVD cells (7 days) in the ECM, implanting it subcutaneously in rabbit and injecting ECM microparticles into degenerative disc, the biological safety and efficacy of decellularized IVD was evaluated both in vitro and in vivo. Here, we demonstrated that cellular components can be removed completely after decellularization and maximally retain the structure and biomechanics of native IVD. We revealed that allogeneic ECM did not evoke any apparent inflammatory reaction in vivo and no cytotoxicity was found in vitro. Moreover, IVD ECM can induce differentiation of MSCs into IVD-like cells in vitro. Furthermore, allogeneic ECM microparticles are effective on the treatment of rabbit disc degeneration in vivo. In conclusion, our study developed an optimized method for IVD decellularization and we proved decellularized IVD is safe and effective for the treatment of degenerated disc diseases. PMID:26933821

  7. Involvement of wound and climacteric ethylene in ripening avocado discs.

    PubMed

    Starrett, D A; Laties, G G

    1991-10-01

    Avocado (Persea americana Mill. cv Hass) discs (3 mm thick) ripened in approximately 72 hours when maintained in a flow of moist air and resembled ripe fruit in texture and taste. Ethylene evolution by discs of early and midseason fruit was characterized by two distinct components, viz. wound ethylene, peaking at approximately 18 hours, and climacteric ethylene, rising to a peak at approximately 72 hours. A commensurate respiratory stimulation accompanied each ethylene peak. Aminoethoxyvinyl glycine (AVG) given consecutively, at once and at 24 hours following disc preparation, prevented wound and climacteric respiration peaks, virtually all ethylene production, and ripening. When AVG was administered for the first 24 hours only, respiratory stimulation and softening (ripening) were retarded by at least a day. When AVG was added solely after the first 24 hours, ripening proceeded as in untreated discs, although climacteric ethylene and respiration were diminished. Propylene given together with AVG led to ripening under all circumstances. 2,5-Norbornadiene given continuously stimulated wound ethylene production, and it inhibited climacteric ethylene evolution, the augmentation of ethylene-forming enzyme activity normally associated with climacteric ethylene, and ripening. 2,5-Norbornadiene given at 24 hours fully inhibited ripening. When intact fruit were pulsed with ethylene for 24 hours before discs were prepared therefrom, the respiration rate, ethylene-forming enzyme activity buildup, and rate of ethylene production were all subsequently enhanced. The evidence suggests that ethylene is involved in all phases of disc ripening. In this view, wound ethylene in discs accelerates events that normally take place over an extended period throughout the lag phase in intact fruit, and climacteric ethylene serves the same ripening function in discs and intact fruit alike.

  8. Ring-Closing and Cross-Metathesis with Artificial Metalloenzymes Created by Covalent Active Site-Directed Hybridization of a Lipase.

    PubMed

    Basauri-Molina, Manuel; Verhoeven, Dide G A; van Schaik, Arnoldus J; Kleijn, Henk; Klein Gebbink, Robertus J M

    2015-10-26

    A series of Grubbs-type catalysts that contain lipase-inhibiting phosphoester functionalities have been synthesized and reacted with the lipase cutinase, which leads to artificial metalloenzymes for olefin metathesis. The resulting hybrids comprise the organometallic fragment that is covalently bound to the active amino acid residue of the enzyme host in an orthogonal orientation. Differences in reactivity as well as accessibility of the active site by the functionalized inhibitor became evident through variation of the anchoring motif and substituents on the N-heterocyclic carbene ligand. Such observations led to the design of a hybrid that is active in the ring-closing metathesis and the cross-metathesis of N,N-diallyl-p-toluenesulfonamide and allylbenzene, respectively, the latter being the first example of its kind in the field of artificial metalloenzymes.

  9. Imaginal Disc Transplantation in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Katsuyama, Tomonori; Paro, Renato

    2016-01-01

    Since Ephrussi and Beadle introduced imaginal disc transplantation to Drosophila research in 1936, the method played an important part towards a better understanding of disc patterning, tissue regeneration, and reprogramming phenomena like transdetermination. Despite increasing usage of high-throughput approaches towards solving biological problems this classical manual method is still in use for studying disc development in a semi-physiological context. Here we describe in detail a protocol and provide recommendations on the procedure in particular for analyzing the regenerative potential of imaginal disks. The steps consist of disc dissection and fragmentation, transplantation into the larval or adult abdomen, and the recovery of implants from the host abdomen. Additionally, we also describe how to make the special transplantation needle from a glass capillary. PMID:27659995

  10. Surface activity and film formation from the surface associated material of artificial surfactant preparations.

    PubMed

    Palmblad, M; Gustafsson, M; Curstedt, T; Johansson, J; Schürch, S

    2001-02-01

    Surfactant proteins B and C (SP-B and SP-C) are present in natural derived surfactant preparations used for treatment of respiratory distress syndrome. Herein the surface activity of an SP-C analogue (SP-C(LKS)), a hybrid peptide between SP-C and bacteriorhodopsin (SP-C/BR) and a model peptide (KL(4)) was studied with a captive bubble surfactometer (CBS). The peptides were mixed with either 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DPPC)/phosphatidylglycerol (PG) (7:3, by weight) or DPPC/PG/palmitic acid (68:22:9, by weight) at a concentration of 1 mg/ml in HEPES buffer, pH 6.9 and a polypeptide/lipid weight ratio of 0.02--0.03. In some lipid/peptide preparations also 2% of SP-B was included. Adsorption, monitored as surface tension vs. time for 10 min after bubble formation did not show discernible differences for the whole set of preparations. Equilibrium surface tensions of approximately 25 mN/m were reached after 5--10 min for all preparations, although those with SP-C/BR appeared not to reach end point of adsorption within 10 min. Area compression needed to reach minimum surface tension of 0.5--2.0 mN/m was least for the KL(4) preparation, about 13% in the first cycle. 3% SP-C(LKS) in DPPC:PG (7:3, by weight) reached minimum surface tension upon 27% compression in the first cycle. If DPPC:PG:PA (68:22:9, by weight) was used instead only 16% area compression was needed and 14% if also 2% SP-B was included. 3% SP-C(LKS) in DPPC:PG (7:3, by weight)+2% SP-B needed 34% compression to reach minimum surface tension. The replenishment of material from a surface associated surfactant reservoir was estimated with subphase depletion experiments. With the 2% KL(4) preparation incorporation of excess material took place at a surface tension of 25--35 mN/m during stepwise bubble expansion and excess material equivalent to 4.3 monolayers was found. When 2% SP-B was added to 3% SP-C(LKS) in DPPC:PG (7:3, by weight) the number of excess monolayers increased from 1.5 to 3

  11. Face-on accretion onto a protoplanetary disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wijnen, T. P. G.; Pols, O. R.; Pelupessy, F. I.; Portegies Zwart, S.

    2016-10-01

    Context. Stars are generally born in clustered stellar environments, which can affect their subsequent evolution. An example of this environmental influence can be found in globular clusters (GCs) harbouring multiple stellar populations. An evolutionary scenario in which a second (and possibly higher order) population is formed by the accretion of chemically enriched material onto the low-mass stars in the initial GC population has been suggested to explain the multiple stellar populations. The idea, dubbed early disc accretion, is that the low-mass, pre-main-sequence stars sweep up gas expelled by the more massive stars of the same generation into their protoplanetary disc as they move through the cluster core. The same process could also occur, to a lesser extent, in embedded stellar systems that are less dense. Aims: Using assumptions that represent the (dynamical) conditions in a typical GC, we investigate whether a low-mass star of 0.4 M⊙ surrounded by a protoplanetary disc can accrete a sufficient amount of enriched material to account for the observed abundances in so-called second generation GC stars. In particular, we focus on the gas-loading rate onto the disc and star, as well as on the lifetime and stability of the disc. Methods: We perform simulations at multiple resolutions with two different smoothed particle hydrodynamics codes and compare the results. Each code uses a different implementation of the artificial viscosity. Results: We find that the gas-loading rate is about a factor of two smaller than the rate based on geometric arguments, because the effective cross-section of the disc is smaller than its surface area. Furthermore, the loading rate is consistent for both codes, irrespective of resolution. Although the disc gains mass in the high-resolution runs, it loses angular momentum on a timescale of 104 yr. Two effects determine the loss of (specific) angular momentum in our simulations: (1) continuous ram pressure stripping and (2

  12. Percutaneous diode laser disc nucleoplasty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menchetti, P. P.; Longo, Leonardo

    2004-09-01

    The treatment of herniated disc disease (HNP) over the years involved different miniinvasive surgical options. The classical microsurgical approach has been substituted over the years both by endoscopic approach in which is possible to practice via endoscopy a laser thermo-discoplasty, both by percutaneous laser disc nucleoplasty. In the last ten years, the percutaneous laser disc nucleoplasty have been done worldwide in more than 40000 cases of HNP. Because water is the major component of the intervertebral disc, and in HNP pain is caused by the disc protrusion pressing against the nerve root, a 980 nm Diode laser introduced via a 22G needle under X-ray guidance and local anesthesia, vaporizes a small amount of nucleous polposus with a disc shrinkage and a relief of pressure on nerve root. Most patients get off the table pain free and are back to work in 5 to 7 days. Material and method: to date, 130 patients (155 cases) suffering for relevant symptoms therapy-resistant 6 months on average before consulting our department, have been treated. Eightyfour (72%) males and 46 (28%) females had a percutaneous laser disc nucleoplasty. The average age of patients operated was 48 years (22 - 69). The level of disc removal was L3/L4 in 12 cases, L4/L5 in 87 cases and L5/S1 in 56 cases. Two different levels were treated at the same time in 25 patients. Results: the success rate at a minimum follow-up of 6 months was 88% with a complication rate of 0.5%.

  13. Designing mucoadhesive discs containing stem bark extract of Ziziphus jujuba based on Iranian traditional documents

    PubMed Central

    Hamedi, Shokouhsadat; Shams-Ardakani, Mohammad Reza; Sadeghpour, Omid; Amin, Gholamreza; Hajighasemali, Dawood; Orafai, Hossein

    2016-01-01

    Objective (s): Mucoadhesive disc is one of the various routes of drug delivery for curing buccal disease Materials and Methods: Every discs containing 70 mg stem bark extract of Ziziphus jujuba were formulated by using Carbopol 934, PVP k30 and gelatin as polymers. Discs were made by granulation and direct compression. Discs were standardized based on the total phenol. Properties such as in vitro and in vivo mucoadhesion, drug release, water uptake, and disintegration were carried out. Results: Discs showed excellent mucoadhesion and released high amount of the active ingredients (47%) immediately and completed after approximately the first hour. They had a good adhesion in buccal cavity. Conclusion: This study showed that the kinetics of release of the active substance from the mucoadhesive disc obeyed the zero order kinetic and didn’t follow the fick's law. The water uptake and dissolution (DS), increased with the passing of time. PMID:27114804

  14. p38alpha, but not p38beta, inhibits the phosphorylation and presence of c-FLIPS in DISC to potentiate Fas-mediated caspase-8 activation and type I apoptotic signaling.

    PubMed

    Tourian, Leon; Zhao, Hong; Srikant, Coimbatore B

    2004-12-15

    Pharmacological inhibitors of JNK (SP600125) and p38 (PD169316) sensitize tumor cells to Fas-mediated apoptosis. PD169316 is less potent than SP600125 and diminishes its effect when present together. Because the p38 isoforms that promote (p38alpha) or inhibit (p38beta) apoptosis are both suppressed by PD169316, we investigated their regulatory involvement in Fas-signaling. We report here, that p38alpha, but not p38beta, exerts its proapoptotic effect by inhibiting the phosphorylation and presence of c-FLIPS, but not c-FLIPL, in the DISC to promote caspase-8 activation and type I signaling in Fas-activated Jurkat cells. Its effect was enhanced by enforced expression of Flag-tagged p38alpha and was attenuated by its inactive mutant (p38alpha-AGF) or by translational silencing. By contrast, type II signaling was facilitated by p38alpha-dependent mitochondrial presence of tBid and inhibition of Bcl-2 (Ser70) phosphorylation as well as by p38alpha/beta-dependent mitochondrial localization of Bax and inhibition of phosphorylation of Bad (Ser112/Ser155). Potentiation of Fas-mediated apoptosis by the inhibition of JNK1/2 correlated with the loss of Bad (Ser136) phosphorylation and was dependent on the stimulatory effect of p38alpha on DISC and the downstream effects of both p38alpha and p38beta. These data underscore the need to reassess the findings obtained with pan-p38 inhibitors and suggest that activation of p38alpha coupled with targeted inhibition of p38beta and JNK1/2 should optimally sensitize tumor cells to Fas-mediated apoptosis.

  15. Disc piezoelectric ceramic transformers.

    PubMed

    Erhart, Jirií; Půlpán, Petr; Doleček, Roman; Psota, Pavel; Lédl, Vít

    2013-08-01

    In this contribution, we present our study on disc-shaped and homogeneously poled piezoelectric ceramic transformers working in planar-extensional vibration modes. Transformers are designed with electrodes divided into wedge, axisymmetrical ring-dot, moonie, smile, or yin-yang segments. Transformation ratio, efficiency, and input and output impedances were measured for low-power signals. Transformer efficiency and transformation ratio were measured as a function of frequency and impedance load in the secondary circuit. Optimum impedance for the maximum efficiency has been found. Maximum efficiency and no-load transformation ratio can reach almost 100% and 52 for the fundamental resonance of ring-dot transformers and 98% and 67 for the second resonance of 2-segment wedge transformers. Maximum efficiency was reached at optimum impedance, which is in the range from 500 Ω to 10 kΩ, depending on the electrode pattern and size. Fundamental vibration mode and its overtones were further studied using frequency-modulated digital holographic interferometry and by the finite element method. Complementary information has been obtained by the infrared camera visualization of surface temperature profiles at higher driving power. PMID:25004532

  16. Disc piezoelectric ceramic transformers.

    PubMed

    Erhart, Jirií; Půlpán, Petr; Doleček, Roman; Psota, Pavel; Lédl, Vít

    2013-08-01

    In this contribution, we present our study on disc-shaped and homogeneously poled piezoelectric ceramic transformers working in planar-extensional vibration modes. Transformers are designed with electrodes divided into wedge, axisymmetrical ring-dot, moonie, smile, or yin-yang segments. Transformation ratio, efficiency, and input and output impedances were measured for low-power signals. Transformer efficiency and transformation ratio were measured as a function of frequency and impedance load in the secondary circuit. Optimum impedance for the maximum efficiency has been found. Maximum efficiency and no-load transformation ratio can reach almost 100% and 52 for the fundamental resonance of ring-dot transformers and 98% and 67 for the second resonance of 2-segment wedge transformers. Maximum efficiency was reached at optimum impedance, which is in the range from 500 Ω to 10 kΩ, depending on the electrode pattern and size. Fundamental vibration mode and its overtones were further studied using frequency-modulated digital holographic interferometry and by the finite element method. Complementary information has been obtained by the infrared camera visualization of surface temperature profiles at higher driving power.

  17. Artificial Reefs and Ocean Dumping.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glueck, Richard D.

    1983-01-01

    Activities and instructional strategies for two multigrade lessons are provided. Activity objectives include describing an artificial reef (such as a sunken ocean liner) as an ecosystem, knowing animal types in the ecosystem, and describing a food web. (JN)

  18. Estimating the fossil disc mass during supermassive black hole mergers: the importance of torque implementation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tazzari, M.; Lodato, G.

    2015-05-01

    In this paper, we revisit the issue of estimating the `fossil' disc mass in the circumprimary disc, during the merger of a supermassive black hole binary. As the binary orbital decay speeds up due to the emission of gravitational waves, the gas in the circumprimary disc might be forced to accrete rapidly and could in principle provide a significant electromagnetic counterpart to the gravitational wave emission. Since the luminosity of such flare is proportional to the gaseous mass in the circumprimary disc, estimating such mass accurately is important. Previous investigations of this issue have produced contradictory results, with some authors estimating super-Eddington flares and large disc mass, while others suggesting that the `fossil' disc mass is very low, even less than a Jupiter mass. Here, we perform simple 1D calculations to show that such very low estimates of the disc mass are an artefact of the specific implementation of the tidal torque in 1D models. In particular, for moderate mass ratios of the binary, the usual formula for the torque used in 1D models significantly overestimates the width of the gap induced by the secondary and this artificially leads to a very small leftover circumprimary disc. Using a modified torque, calibrated to reproduce the correct gap width as estimated by 3D models, leads to fossil disc masses of the order of one solar mass. The rapid accretion of the whole circumprimary disc would produce peak luminosities of the order of 1-20 times the Eddington luminosity. Even if a significant fraction of the gas escapes accretion by flowing out the secondary orbit during the merger (an effect not included in our calculations), we would still predict close to Eddington luminosities that might be easily detected.

  19. Post-drilling hydrothermal vent and associated biological activities seen through artificial hydrothermal vents in the Iheya North field, Okinawa Trough

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takai, K.; Kawagucci, S.; Miyazaki, J.; Watsuji, T.; Ishibashi, J.; Yamamoto, H.; Nozaki, T.; Kashiwabara, T.; Shibuya, T.

    2012-12-01

    In 2010, IODP Expedition 331 was conducted in the Iheya North Field, the Okinawa Trough and drilled several sites in hydrothermally active subseafloor. In addition, during the IODP Expedition 331, four new hydrothermal vents were created. These post-drilling artificial hydrothermal vents provide excellent opportunities to investigate the physical, chemical and microbiological characteristics of the previously unexplored subseafloor hydrothermal fluid reservoirs, and to monitor and estimate how the anthropogenic drilling behaviors affect the deep-sea hydrothermal vent ecosystem. We were very much interested in the difference of hydrothermal fluid chemistry between the natural hydrothermal vents and the artificial hydrothermal vents. The IODP porewater chemistry of the cores pointed to the density-driven stratification of the phase-separated hydrothermal fluids and the natural vent fluids were likely derived only from the shallower vapor-enriched phases. However, the artificial hydrothermal vents had deeper fluid sources in the subseafloor hydrothermal fluid reservoirs composed of vapor-lost (Cl-enriched) phases. The fluids from the artificial hydrothermal vents were sampled by ROV at 5, 12 and 18 months after the IODP expedition. The artificial hydrothermal vent fluids were slightly enriched with Cl as compared to the natural hydrothermal vent fluids. Thus, the artificial hydrothermal vents successfully entrained the previously unexplored subseafloor hydrothermal fluids. The newly created hydrothermal vents also hosted the very quickly grown, enormous chimney structures, of which mineral compositions were highly variable among the vents. However, the quickly grown C0016B and C0016D vent chimneys were found to be typical Kuroko ore even though the chimney growth rates in the artificial vents were extremely faster than those in the natural vents. In addition, the IODP drilling operation not only created new hydrothermal vents by deep drilling but also induced the

  20. Testing hydrodynamics schemes in galaxy disc simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Few, C. G.; Dobbs, C.; Pettitt, A.; Konstandin, L.

    2016-08-01

    We examine how three fundamentally different numerical hydrodynamics codes follow the evolution of an isothermal galactic disc with an external spiral potential. We compare an adaptive mesh refinement code (RAMSES), a smoothed particle hydrodynamics code (SPHNG), and a volume-discretized mesh-less code (GIZMO). Using standard refinement criteria, we find that RAMSES produces a disc that is less vertically concentrated and does not reach such high densities as the SPHNG or GIZMO runs. The gas surface density in the spiral arms increases at a lower rate for the RAMSES simulations compared to the other codes. There is also a greater degree of substructure in the SPHNG and GIZMO runs and secondary spiral arms are more pronounced. By resolving the Jeans length with a greater number of grid cells, we achieve more similar results to the Lagrangian codes used in this study. Other alterations to the refinement scheme (adding extra levels of refinement and refining based on local density gradients) are less successful in reducing the disparity between RAMSES and SPHNG/GIZMO. Although more similar, SPHNG displays different density distributions and vertical mass profiles to all modes of GIZMO (including the smoothed particle hydrodynamics version). This suggests differences also arise which are not intrinsic to the particular method but rather due to its implementation. The discrepancies between codes (in particular, the densities reached in the spiral arms) could potentially result in differences in the locations and time-scales for gravitational collapse, and therefore impact star formation activity in more complex galaxy disc simulations.

  1. MRI Evaluation of Lumbar Disc Degenerative Disease

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Rupal; Mehta, Chetan; Patel, Narrotam

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Lower back pain secondary to degenerative disc disease is a condition that affects young to middle-aged persons with peak incidence at approximately 40 y. MRI is the standard imaging modality for detecting disc pathology due to its advantage of lack of radiation, multiplanar imaging capability, excellent spinal soft-tissue contrast and precise localization of intervertebral discs changes. Aims and Objective: To evaluate the characterization, extent, and changes associated with the degenerative lumbar disc disease by Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Study Design: Cross-sectional and observational study. Materials and Methods: A total 109 patients of the lumbar disc degeneration with age group between 17 to 80 y were diagnosed & studied on 1.5 Tesla Magnetic Resonance Imaging machine. MRI findings like lumbar lordosis, Schmorl’s nodes, decreased disc height, disc annular tear, disc herniation, disc bulge, disc protrusion and disc extrusion were observed. Narrowing of the spinal canal, lateral recess and neural foramen with compression of nerve roots observed. Ligamentum flavum thickening and facetal arthropathy was observed. Result: Males were more commonly affected in Degenerative Spinal Disease & most of the patients show loss of lumbar lordosis. Decreased disc height was common at L5-S1 level. More than one disc involvement was seen per person. L4 – L5 disc was the most commonly involved. Annular disc tear, disc herniation, disc extrusion, narrowing of spinal canal, narrowing of lateral recess, compression of neural foramen, ligamentum flavum thickening and facetal arthropathy was common at the L4 –L5 disc level. Disc buldge was common at L3 – L4 & L4 – L5 disc level. Posterior osteophytes are common at L3 - L4 & L5 –S1 disc level. L1- L2 disc involvement and spondylolisthesis are less common. Conclusion: Lumbar disc degeneration is the most common cause of low back pain. Plain radiograph can be helpful in visualizing gross anatomic changes in

  2. Nuclear DISC1 regulates CRE-mediated gene transcription and sleep homeostasis in the fruit fly.

    PubMed

    Sawamura, N; Ando, T; Maruyama, Y; Fujimuro, M; Mochizuki, H; Honjo, K; Shimoda, M; Toda, H; Sawamura-Yamamoto, T; Makuch, L A; Hayashi, A; Ishizuka, K; Cascella, N G; Kamiya, A; Ishida, N; Tomoda, T; Hai, T; Furukubo-Tokunaga, K; Sawa, A

    2008-12-01

    Disrupted-in-schizophrenia-1 (DISC1) is one of major susceptibility factors for a wide range of mental illnesses, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression and autism spectrum conditions. DISC1 is located in several subcellular domains, such as the centrosome and the nucleus, and interacts with various proteins, including NudE-like (NUDEL/NDEL1) and activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4)/CREB2. Nevertheless, a role for DISC1 in vivo remains to be elucidated. Therefore, we have generated a Drosophila model for examining normal functions of DISC1 in living organisms. DISC1 transgenic flies with preferential accumulation of exogenous human DISC1 in the nucleus display disturbance in sleep homeostasis, which has been reportedly associated with CREB signaling/CRE-mediated gene transcription. Thus, in mammalian cells, we characterized nuclear DISC1, and identified a subset of nuclear DISC1 that colocalizes with the promyelocytic leukemia (PML) bodies, a nuclear compartment for gene transcription. Furthermore, we identified three functional cis-elements that regulate the nuclear localization of DISC1. We also report that DISC1 interacts with ATF4/CREB2 and a corepressor N-CoR, modulating CRE-mediated gene transcription. PMID:18762802

  3. [Artificial neural networks in Neurosciences].

    PubMed

    Porras Chavarino, Carmen; Salinas Martínez de Lecea, José María

    2011-11-01

    This article shows that artificial neural networks are used for confirming the relationships between physiological and cognitive changes. Specifically, we explore the influence of a decrease of neurotransmitters on the behaviour of old people in recognition tasks. This artificial neural network recognizes learned patterns. When we change the threshold of activation in some units, the artificial neural network simulates the experimental results of old people in recognition tasks. However, the main contributions of this paper are the design of an artificial neural network and its operation inspired by the nervous system and the way the inputs are coded and the process of orthogonalization of patterns.

  4. Synthesis, characterization, crystal structures and biological activity of set of Cu(II) benzothiazole complexes: artificial nucleases with cytotoxic activities.

    PubMed

    Steiner, Ramsey A; Foreman, David; Lin, Han X; Carney, Bruce K; Fox, Kristin M; Cassimeris, Lynne; Tanski, Joseph M; Tyler, Laurie A

    2014-08-01

    A series of Cu(II) complexes with ligand frames based on quinoline derivatives appended with a benzothiazole substituent has been isolated. The complexes, Cu(Q(oBt))(NO3)2(H2O)∙CH3OH (1∙CH3OH), Cu(8OHQ(oBt))Cl2∙CH3OH (2∙CH3OH), Cu(8OQ(oBt))Cl(CH3OH)∙CH3OH (3∙CH3OH) and [Cu(8OH1/2Q(oBt))(CH3OH)(NO3)]2(NO3) (4) have been characterized by single crystal X-ray diffraction, IR and UV-visible spectroscopies, and elemental analysis. The ligand frame within the set of complexes differs in the substituent on the quinoline ring: complex 1 remains unsubstituted at this position while complexes 2-4 have a substituted OH group. In complex 2, the bound phenol remains protonated while in 3 it is a phenolato group. Complex 4 contains two complexes within the unit cell and one NO3(-) giving rise to an overall 'half-protonation'. The interaction between complexes 1-3 with CT-DNA was investigated using fluorescence emission spectroscopy and revealed 2 and 3 strongly intercalate DNA with Kapp values of 1.47×10(7)M(-1) and 3.09×10(7)M(-1), respectively. The ability of complexes 1-3 to cleave SC-DNA was monitored using gel electrophoresis. Each complex exhibits potent, concentration dependent nuclease activity forming single and double-nicked DNA as low as 10μM. The nuclease activity of complexes 1-3 is primarily dependent on (1)O2 species while ·OH radicals play a secondary role in the cleavage by complexes 2 and 3. The cytotoxic effects of 1-3 were examined using HeLa cells and show cell death in the micromolar range. The distribution of cell cycle stages remains unchanged when complexes are present indicating DNA damage may be occurring throughout the cell cycle. PMID:24794274

  5. The life cycles of Be viscous decretion discs: Time-dependent modelling of infrared continuum observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vieira, R. G.; Carciofi, A. C.; Bjorkman, J. E.; Rivinius, Th.; Baade, D.; Rímulo, L. R.

    2016-10-01

    We apply the viscous decretion disc (VDD) model to interpret the infrared disc continuum emission of 80 Be stars observed in different epochs. In this way, we determined 169 specific disc structures, namely their density scale, ρ0, and exponent, n. We found that the n values range mainly between 1.5 and 3.5, and ρ0 varies between 10-12 and 10-10 g cm-3, with a peak close to the lower value. Our large sample also allowed us to firmly establish that the discs around early-type stars are denser than in late-type stars. Additionally, we estimated the disc mass decretion rates and found that they range between 10-12 and 10-9 M⊙ yr-1. These values are compatible with recent stellar evolution models of fast-rotating stars. One of the main findings of this work is a correlation between the ρ0 and n values. In order to find out whether these relations can be traced back to the evolution of discs or have some other origin, we used the VDD model to calculate temporal sequences under different assumptions for the time profile of the disc mass injection. The results support the hypothesis that the observed distribution of disc properties is due to a common evolutionary path. In particular, our results suggest that the timescale for disc growth, during which the disc is being actively fed by mass injection episodes, is shorter than the timescale for disc dissipation, when the disc is no longer fed by the star and dissipates as a result of the viscous diffusion of the disc material.

  6. Artificial rearing.

    PubMed

    Dominguez, Hector D; Thomas, Jennifer D

    2008-01-01

    Prenatal alcohol exposure disrupts development, leading to a range of effects referred to as fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD). FASDs include physical, central nervous system, and behavioral alterations. Animal model systems are used to study the relationship between alcohol-related central nervous system damage and behavioral alterations, risk factors for FASD, mechanisms of alcohol-induced damage, as well as treatments and interventions. When using a rodent model, it is important to recognize that the timing of brain development relative to birth differs between humans and rodents. Thus, to model alcohol exposure during the third trimester equivalent, rats must be exposed during early postnatal development (postnatal days 4-9). Artificial rearing is one experimental paradigm that is used to expose neonatal rats to alcohol during this period of brain development. Neonatal rat pups are housed in an artificial rearing environment and automatically fed a milk diet substitute via an intragastric cannula to ensure adequate growth during the treatment period. Alcohol is delivered in the milk diet. This chapter provides a description of the methods needed for this administrative technique, including preparation of the artificial rearing environment, gastrostomy surgery, and care of artificially reared rat pups.

  7. Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wash, Darrel Patrick

    1989-01-01

    Making a machine seem intelligent is not easy. As a consequence, demand has been rising for computer professionals skilled in artificial intelligence and is likely to continue to go up. These workers develop expert systems and solve the mysteries of machine vision, natural language processing, and neural networks. (Editor)

  8. The psychiatric disease risk factors DISC1 and TNIK interact to regulate synapse composition and function

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Q; Charych, EI; Pulito, VL; Lee, JB; Graziane, NM; Crozier, RA; Revilla-Sanchez, R; Kelly, MP; Dunlop, AJ; Murdoch, H; Taylor, N; Xie, Y; Pausch, M; Hayashi-Takagi, A; Ishizuka, K; Seshadri, S; Bates, B; Kariya, K; Sawa, A; Weinberg, RJ; Moss, SJ; Houslay, MD; Yan, Z; Brandon, NJ

    2011-01-01

    Disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), a genetic risk factor for multiple serious psychiatric diseases including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and autism, is a key regulator of multiple neuronal functions linked to both normal development and disease processes. As these diseases are thought to share a common deficit in synaptic function and architecture, we have analyzed the role of DISC1 using an approach that focuses on understanding the protein– protein interactions of DISC1 specifically at synapses. We identify the Traf2 and Nck-interacting kinase (TNIK), an emerging risk factor itself for disease, as a key synaptic partner for DISC1, and provide evidence that the DISC1–TNIK interaction regulates synaptic composition and activity by stabilizing the levels of key postsynaptic density proteins. Understanding the novel DISC1–TNIK interaction is likely to provide insights into the etiology and underlying synaptic deficits found in major psychiatric diseases. PMID:20838393

  9. Automatic diagnosis of lumbar disc herniation with shape and appearance features from MRI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alomari, Raja'S.; Corso, Jason J.; Chaudhary, Vipin; Dhillon, Gurmeet

    2010-03-01

    Intervertebral disc herniation is a major reason for lower back pain (LBP), which is the second most common neurological ailment in the United States. Automation of herniated disc diagnosis reduces the large burden on radiologists who have to diagnose hundreds of cases each day using clinical MRI. We present a method for automatic diagnosis of lumbar disc herniation using appearance and shape features. We jointly use the intensity signal for modeling the appearance of herniated disc and the active shape model for modeling the shape of herniated disc. We utilize a Gibbs distribution for classification of discs using appearance and shape features. We use 33 clinical MRI cases of the lumbar area for training and testing both appearance and shape models. We achieve over 91% accuracy in detection of herniation in a cross-validation experiment with specificity of 91% and sensitivity of 94%.

  10. Gravitoturbulence in magnetized protostellar discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riols, A.; Latter, H.

    2016-08-01

    Gravitational instability (GI) features in several aspects of protostellar disc evolution, most notably in angular momentum transport, fragmentation, and the outbursts exemplified by FU Ori and EX Lupi systems. The outer regions of protostellar discs may also be coupled to magnetic fields, which could then modify the development of GI. To understand the basic elements of their interaction, we perform local 2D ideal and resistive magnetohydrodynamics simulations with an imposed toroidal field. In the regime of moderate plasma beta, we find that the system supports a hot gravitoturbulent state, characterized by considerable magnetic energy and stress and a surprisingly large Toomre parameter Q ≳ 10. This result has potential implications for disc structure, vertical thickness, ionization, etc. Our simulations also reveal the existence of long-lived and dense `magnetic islands' or plasmoids. Lastly, we find that the presence of a magnetic field has little impact on the fragmentation criterion of the disc. Though our focus is on protostellar discs, some of our results may be relevant for the outer radii of AGN.

  11. Disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) and Syntaphilin collaborate to modulate axonal mitochondrial anchoring.

    PubMed

    Park, Cana; Lee, Seol-Ae; Hong, Ji-Ho; Suh, Yeongjun; Park, Sung Jin; Suh, Bo Kyoung; Woo, Youngsik; Choi, Jinhyuk; Huh, Ji-Won; Kim, You-Me; Park, Sang Ki

    2016-07-02

    In neuronal axons, the ratio of motile-to-stationary mitochondria is tightly regulated by neuronal activation, thereby meeting the need for local calcium buffering and maintaining the ATP supply. However, the molecular players and detailed regulatory mechanisms behind neuronal mitochondrial movement are not completely understood. Here, we found that neuronal activation-induced mitochondrial anchoring is regulated by Disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), which is accomplished by functional association with Syntaphilin (SNPH). DISC1 deficiency resulted in reduced axonal mitochondrial movement, which was partially reversed by concomitant SNPH depletion. In addition, a SNPH deletion mutant lacking the sequence for interaction with DISC1 exhibited an enhanced mitochondrial anchoring effect than wild-type SNPH. Moreover, upon neuronal activation, mitochondrial movement was preserved by DISC1 overexpression, not showing immobilized response of mitochondria. Taken together, we propose that DISC1 in association with SNPH is a component of a modulatory complex that determines mitochondrial anchoring in response to neuronal activation.

  12. Establishment and characterization of a cell based artificial antigen-presenting cell for expansion and activation of CD8+ T cells ex vivo.

    PubMed

    Gong, Weijuan; Ji, Mingchun; Cao, Zhengfeng; Wang, Liheng; Qian, Yayun; Hu, Maozhi; Qian, Li; Pan, Xingyuan

    2008-02-01

    Artificial antigen-presenting cells are expected to stimulate the expansion and acquisition of optimal therapeutic features of T cells before infusion. Here CD32 that binds to a crystallizable fragment of IgG monoclonal antibody was genetically expressed on human K562 leukemia cells to provide a ligand for T-cell receptor. CD86 and 4-1BBL, which are ligands of co-stimulating receptors of CD28 and 4-1BB, respectively, were also expressed on K562 cells. Then we accomplished the artificial antigen-presenting cells by coupling K32/CD86/4-1BBL cell with OKT3 monoclonal antibody against CD3, named K32/CD86/4-1BBL/OKT3 cells. These artificial modified cells had the abilities of inducing CD8+ T cell activation, promoting CD8+ T cell proliferation, division, and long-term growth, inhibiting CD8+ T cell apoptosis, and enhancing CD8+ T cell secretion of IFN-gamma and perforin. Furthermore, antigen-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes could be retained in the culture stimulated with K32/CD86/4-1BBL/OKT3 cells at least within 28 days. This approach was robust, simple, reproducible and economical for expansion and activation of CD8+ T cells and may have important therapeutic implications for adoptive immunotherapy. PMID:18318994

  13. Competitive coordination aggregation for V-shaped [Co3] and disc-like [Co7] complexes: synthesis, magnetic properties and catechol oxidase activity.

    PubMed

    Singha Mahapatra, Tufan; Basak, Dipmalya; Chand, Santanu; Lengyel, Jeff; Shatruk, Michael; Bertolasi, Valerio; Ray, Debashis

    2016-09-14

    Unique dependence on the nature of metal salt and reaction conditions for coordination assembly reactions of varying architecture and nuclearity have been identified in V-shaped [Co3L4] and planar disc-like [Co7L6] compounds: [CoL2(μ-L)2(μ-OH2)2(CF3CO2)2] (1) and [Co(μ-L)6(μ-OMe)6]Cl2 (2) (HL = 2-{(3-ethoxypropylimino)methyl}-6-methoxyphenol). At room temperature varying reaction conditions, cobalt-ligand ratios and use of different bases allowed unique types of coordination self-assembly. The synthetic marvel lies in the nature of aggregation with respect to the two unrelated cores in 1 and 2. Complex 1 assumes a V-shaped arrangement bound to L(-), water and a trifluoroacetate anion, while 2 grows around a central Co(II) ion surrounded by a {Co} hexagon bound to methoxide and L(-). Magnetic measurements revealed that the intermetallic interactions are antiferromagnetic in nature in the case of complex 1 and ferromagnetic in the case of 2 involving high spin cobalt(ii) ions with stabilization of the high-spin ground state in the latter case. In MeCN solutions complexes 1 and 2 showed catalytic oxidation of 3,5-di-tert-butylcatechol (3,5-DTBCH2) to 3,5-di-tert-butylbenzoquinone (3,5-DTBQ) in air. The kinetic study in MeCN revealed that with respect to the catalytic turnover number (kcat) 2 is more effective than 1 for oxidation of 3,5-DTBCH2. PMID:27510847

  14. Black hole accretion disc impacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pihajoki, P.

    2016-04-01

    We present an analytic model for computing the luminosity and spectral evolution of flares caused by a supermassive black hole impacting the accretion disc of another supermassive black hole. Our model includes photon diffusion, emission from optically thin regions and relativistic corrections to the observed spectrum and time-scales. We test the observability of the impact scenario with a simulated population of quasars hosting supermassive black hole binaries. The results indicate that for a moderate binary mass ratio of 0.3, and impact distances of 100 primary Schwarzschild radii, the accretion disc impacts can be expected to equal or exceed the host quasar in brightness at observed wavelength λ = 510 nm up to z = 0.6. We conclude that accretion disc impacts may function as an independent probe for supermassive black hole binaries. We release the code used for computing the model light curves to the community.

  15. DISC1–ATF4 transcriptional repression complex: dual regulation of the cAMP-PDE4 cascade by DISC1

    PubMed Central

    Soda, T; Frank, C; Ishizuka, K; Baccarella, A; Park, Y-U; Flood, Z; Park, S K; Sawa, A; Tsai, L-H

    2013-01-01

    Disrupted-In-Schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), a risk factor for major mental illnesses, has been studied extensively in the context of neurodevelopment. However, the role of DISC1 in neuronal signaling, particularly in conjunction with intracellular cascades that occur in response to dopamine, a neurotransmitter implicated in numerous psychiatric disorders, remains elusive. Previous data suggest that DISC1 interacts with numerous proteins that impact neuronal function, including activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4). In this study, we identify a novel DISC1 and ATF4 binding region in the genomic locus of phosphodiesterase 4D (PDE4D), a gene implicated in psychiatric disorders. We found that the loss of function of either DISC1 or ATF4 increases PDE4D9 transcription, and that the association of DISC1 with the PDE4D9 locus requires ATF4. We also show that PDE4D9 is increased by D1-type dopamine receptor dopaminergic stimulation. We demonstrate that the mechanism for this increase is due to DISC1 dissociation from the PDE4D locus in mouse brain. We further characterize the interaction of DISC1 with ATF4 to show that it is regulated via protein kinase A-mediated phosphorylation of DISC1 serine-58. Our results suggest that the release of DISC1-mediated transcriptional repression of PDE4D9 acts as feedback inhibition to regulate dopaminergic signaling. Furthermore, as DISC1 loss-of-function leads to a specific increase in PDE4D9, PDE4D9 itself may represent an attractive target for therapeutic approaches in psychiatric disorders. PMID:23587879

  16. Artificial Intelligence.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, David R; Palacios-González, César; Harris, John

    2016-04-01

    It seems natural to think that the same prudential and ethical reasons for mutual respect and tolerance that one has vis-à-vis other human persons would hold toward newly encountered paradigmatic but nonhuman biological persons. One also tends to think that they would have similar reasons for treating we humans as creatures that count morally in our own right. This line of thought transcends biological boundaries-namely, with regard to artificially (super)intelligent persons-but is this a safe assumption? The issue concerns ultimate moral significance: the significance possessed by human persons, persons from other planets, and hypothetical nonorganic persons in the form of artificial intelligence (AI). This article investigates why our possible relations to AI persons could be more complicated than they first might appear, given that they might possess a radically different nature to us, to the point that civilized or peaceful coexistence in a determinate geographical space could be impossible to achieve.

  17. Artificial Intelligence.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, David R; Palacios-González, César; Harris, John

    2016-04-01

    It seems natural to think that the same prudential and ethical reasons for mutual respect and tolerance that one has vis-à-vis other human persons would hold toward newly encountered paradigmatic but nonhuman biological persons. One also tends to think that they would have similar reasons for treating we humans as creatures that count morally in our own right. This line of thought transcends biological boundaries-namely, with regard to artificially (super)intelligent persons-but is this a safe assumption? The issue concerns ultimate moral significance: the significance possessed by human persons, persons from other planets, and hypothetical nonorganic persons in the form of artificial intelligence (AI). This article investigates why our possible relations to AI persons could be more complicated than they first might appear, given that they might possess a radically different nature to us, to the point that civilized or peaceful coexistence in a determinate geographical space could be impossible to achieve. PMID:26957450

  18. Quantitative structure-activity relationship study of P2X7 receptor inhibitors using combination of principal component analysis and artificial intelligence methods.

    PubMed

    Ahmadi, Mehdi; Shahlaei, Mohsen

    2015-01-01

    P2X7 antagonist activity for a set of 49 molecules of the P2X7 receptor antagonists, derivatives of purine, was modeled with the aid of chemometric and artificial intelligence techniques. The activity of these compounds was estimated by means of combination of principal component analysis (PCA), as a well-known data reduction method, genetic algorithm (GA), as a variable selection technique, and artificial neural network (ANN), as a non-linear modeling method. First, a linear regression, combined with PCA, (principal component regression) was operated to model the structure-activity relationships, and afterwards a combination of PCA and ANN algorithm was employed to accurately predict the biological activity of the P2X7 antagonist. PCA preserves as much of the information as possible contained in the original data set. Seven most important PC's to the studied activity were selected as the inputs of ANN box by an efficient variable selection method, GA. The best computational neural network model was a fully-connected, feed-forward model with 7-7-1 architecture. The developed ANN model was fully evaluated by different validation techniques, including internal and external validation, and chemical applicability domain. All validations showed that the constructed quantitative structure-activity relationship model suggested is robust and satisfactory. PMID:26600858

  19. Quantitative structure-activity relationship study of P2X7 receptor inhibitors using combination of principal component analysis and artificial intelligence methods.

    PubMed

    Ahmadi, Mehdi; Shahlaei, Mohsen

    2015-01-01

    P2X7 antagonist activity for a set of 49 molecules of the P2X7 receptor antagonists, derivatives of purine, was modeled with the aid of chemometric and artificial intelligence techniques. The activity of these compounds was estimated by means of combination of principal component analysis (PCA), as a well-known data reduction method, genetic algorithm (GA), as a variable selection technique, and artificial neural network (ANN), as a non-linear modeling method. First, a linear regression, combined with PCA, (principal component regression) was operated to model the structure-activity relationships, and afterwards a combination of PCA and ANN algorithm was employed to accurately predict the biological activity of the P2X7 antagonist. PCA preserves as much of the information as possible contained in the original data set. Seven most important PC's to the studied activity were selected as the inputs of ANN box by an efficient variable selection method, GA. The best computational neural network model was a fully-connected, feed-forward model with 7-7-1 architecture. The developed ANN model was fully evaluated by different validation techniques, including internal and external validation, and chemical applicability domain. All validations showed that the constructed quantitative structure-activity relationship model suggested is robust and satisfactory.

  20. Quantitative structure–activity relationship study of P2X7 receptor inhibitors using combination of principal component analysis and artificial intelligence methods

    PubMed Central

    Ahmadi, Mehdi; Shahlaei, Mohsen

    2015-01-01

    P2X7 antagonist activity for a set of 49 molecules of the P2X7 receptor antagonists, derivatives of purine, was modeled with the aid of chemometric and artificial intelligence techniques. The activity of these compounds was estimated by means of combination of principal component analysis (PCA), as a well-known data reduction method, genetic algorithm (GA), as a variable selection technique, and artificial neural network (ANN), as a non-linear modeling method. First, a linear regression, combined with PCA, (principal component regression) was operated to model the structure–activity relationships, and afterwards a combination of PCA and ANN algorithm was employed to accurately predict the biological activity of the P2X7 antagonist. PCA preserves as much of the information as possible contained in the original data set. Seven most important PC's to the studied activity were selected as the inputs of ANN box by an efficient variable selection method, GA. The best computational neural network model was a fully-connected, feed-forward model with 7−7−1 architecture. The developed ANN model was fully evaluated by different validation techniques, including internal and external validation, and chemical applicability domain. All validations showed that the constructed quantitative structure–activity relationship model suggested is robust and satisfactory. PMID:26600858

  1. Artificial vision.

    PubMed

    Zarbin, M; Montemagno, C; Leary, J; Ritch, R

    2011-09-01

    A number treatment options are emerging for patients with retinal degenerative disease, including gene therapy, trophic factor therapy, visual cycle inhibitors (e.g., for patients with Stargardt disease and allied conditions), and cell transplantation. A radically different approach, which will augment but not replace these options, is termed neural prosthetics ("artificial vision"). Although rewiring of inner retinal circuits and inner retinal neuronal degeneration occur in association with photoreceptor degeneration in retinitis pigmentosa (RP), it is possible to create visually useful percepts by stimulating retinal ganglion cells electrically. This fact has lead to the development of techniques to induce photosensitivity in cells that are not light sensitive normally as well as to the development of the bionic retina. Advances in artificial vision continue at a robust pace. These advances are based on the use of molecular engineering and nanotechnology to render cells light-sensitive, to target ion channels to the appropriate cell type (e.g., bipolar cell) and/or cell region (e.g., dendritic tree vs. soma), and on sophisticated image processing algorithms that take advantage of our knowledge of signal processing in the retina. Combined with advances in gene therapy, pathway-based therapy, and cell-based therapy, "artificial vision" technologies create a powerful armamentarium with which ophthalmologists will be able to treat blindness in patients who have a variety of degenerative retinal diseases.

  2. Impact of molybdenum nanoparticles on survival, activity of enzymes, and chemical elements in Eisenia fetida using test on artificial substrata.

    PubMed

    Lebedev, Sviatoslav; Yausheva, Elena; Galaktionova, Lyudmila; Sizova, Elena

    2016-09-01

    The influence of molybdenum oxide nanoparticles (MoO3) on the growth and survival of Eisenia fetida was established. The activity of antioxidant enzymes and changes in concentration of molybdenum in the body of E. fetida were determined. The degree of bacterial bioluminescence inhibition in extracts of substrates and worm was studied using luminescent strain Escherichia coli K12 TG1. The enzymatic activity of substrates before and after exposure with nanoparticles and worms was assessed. Nanoparticles have concentrations of 10, 40, and 500 mg/kg of dry matter, and substrata are made of artificial soil (substrate A) and microcrystalline cellulose (substrate B). Spherical nanoparticles MoO3, yellow in color, with size 92 ± 0.3 nm, Z-potential 42 ± 0.52 mV, molybdenum content 99.8 mass/%, and specific area 12 m(2)/g were used in the study. A significant decrease by 23.3 % in weight was registered (for MoO3 NPs at 500 mg/kg) on substrate A (p ≤ 0.05). On substrate B, the maximum decrease in weight by 20.5, 33.3, and 16.9 % (p ≤ 0.05) was registered at a dose of 10, 40, and 500 mg/kg, respectively; mortality was from 6.6 to 73 %. After the assessment of bacterial bioluminescence inhibition in substrates A and B (extracts) and before worms were put, the toxicity of substrates was established at doses of 40 and 500 mg/kg, expressed in inhibitory concentration (IC) 30 and IC 50 values. Comparatively, on days 7 and 14, after exposure in the presence of E. fetida, no inhibition of bioluminescence was registered in extracts of substrates A and B, indicating the reduction in toxicity of substrates. The initial content of molybdenum in E. fetida was 0.9 ± 0.018 mg/kg of dry matter. The degree of molybdenum accumulation in worm tissue was dependent on the dose and substrate quality. In particular, 2-7 mg/kg of molybdenum accumulated from substrate A, while up to 15 kg/kg of molybdenum accumulated from substrate B (day 7). Molybdenum

  3. Impact of molybdenum nanoparticles on survival, activity of enzymes, and chemical elements in Eisenia fetida using test on artificial substrata.

    PubMed

    Lebedev, Sviatoslav; Yausheva, Elena; Galaktionova, Lyudmila; Sizova, Elena

    2016-09-01

    The influence of molybdenum oxide nanoparticles (MoO3) on the growth and survival of Eisenia fetida was established. The activity of antioxidant enzymes and changes in concentration of molybdenum in the body of E. fetida were determined. The degree of bacterial bioluminescence inhibition in extracts of substrates and worm was studied using luminescent strain Escherichia coli K12 TG1. The enzymatic activity of substrates before and after exposure with nanoparticles and worms was assessed. Nanoparticles have concentrations of 10, 40, and 500 mg/kg of dry matter, and substrata are made of artificial soil (substrate A) and microcrystalline cellulose (substrate B). Spherical nanoparticles MoO3, yellow in color, with size 92 ± 0.3 nm, Z-potential 42 ± 0.52 mV, molybdenum content 99.8 mass/%, and specific area 12 m(2)/g were used in the study. A significant decrease by 23.3 % in weight was registered (for MoO3 NPs at 500 mg/kg) on substrate A (p ≤ 0.05). On substrate B, the maximum decrease in weight by 20.5, 33.3, and 16.9 % (p ≤ 0.05) was registered at a dose of 10, 40, and 500 mg/kg, respectively; mortality was from 6.6 to 73 %. After the assessment of bacterial bioluminescence inhibition in substrates A and B (extracts) and before worms were put, the toxicity of substrates was established at doses of 40 and 500 mg/kg, expressed in inhibitory concentration (IC) 30 and IC 50 values. Comparatively, on days 7 and 14, after exposure in the presence of E. fetida, no inhibition of bioluminescence was registered in extracts of substrates A and B, indicating the reduction in toxicity of substrates. The initial content of molybdenum in E. fetida was 0.9 ± 0.018 mg/kg of dry matter. The degree of molybdenum accumulation in worm tissue was dependent on the dose and substrate quality. In particular, 2-7 mg/kg of molybdenum accumulated from substrate A, while up to 15 kg/kg of molybdenum accumulated from substrate B (day 7). Molybdenum

  4. Parker winds revisited: an extension to disc winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Waters, Timothy R.; Proga, Daniel

    2012-11-01

    A simple 1D dynamical model of thermally driven disc winds is proposed, based on the results of recent, 2.5D axisymmetric simulations. Our formulation of the disc wind problem is in the spirit of the original Parker and Bondi problems, namely we assume an elementary flow configuration consisting of an outflow following pre-defined trajectories in the presence of a central gravitating point mass. Viscosity and heat conduction are neglected. We consider two different streamline geometries, both comprised of straight lines in the (x, z)-plane: (i) streamlines that converge to a geometric point located at (x, z) = (0, -d) and (ii) streamlines that emerge at a constant inclination angle from the disc mid-plane (the x-axis, as we consider geometrically thin accretion discs). The former geometry is commonly used in kinematic models to compute synthetic spectra, while the latter, which exhibits self-similarity, is likely unused for this purpose, although it easily can be with existing kinematic models. We make the case that it should be, i.e. geometry (ii) leads to transonic wind solutions with substantially different properties owing to its lack of streamline divergence. Both geometries can be used to complement recent efforts to estimate photoevaporative mass-loss rates from protoplanetary discs. Pertinent to understanding our disc wind results, which are also applicable to X-ray binaries and active galactic nuclei, is a focused discussion on lesser known properties of classic Parker wind solutions. We find that the parameter space corresponding to decelerating Parker wind solutions is made larger due to rotation and leads instead to disc wind solutions that always accelerate after the bulk velocity is slowed to a minimum value. Surprisingly, Keplerian rotation may allow for two different transonic wind solutions for the same physical conditions.

  5. Electromagnetic Levitation of a Disc

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Valle, R.; Neves, F.; de Andrade, R., Jr.; Stephan, R. M.

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents a teaching experiment that explores the levitation of a disc of ferromagnetic material in the presence of the magnetic field produced by a single electromagnet. In comparison to the classical experiment of the levitation of a sphere, the main advantage of the proposed laboratory bench is that the uniform magnetic field…

  6. Design, RNA cleavage and antiviral activity of new artificial ribonucleases derived from mono-, di- and tripeptides connected by linkers of different hydrophobicity.

    PubMed

    Tamkovich, Nikolay; Koroleva, Lyudmila; Kovpak, Mikhail; Goncharova, Elena; Silnikov, Vladimir; Vlassov, Valentin; Zenkova, Marina

    2016-03-15

    A novel series of metal-free artificial ribonucleases (aRNases) was designed, synthesized and assessed in terms of ribonuclease activity and ability to inactivate influenza virus WSN/A33/H1N1 in vitro. The compounds were built of two short peptide fragments, which include Lys, Ser, Arg, Glu and imidazole residues in various combinations, connected by linkers of different hydrophobicity (1,12-diaminododecane or 4,9-dioxa-1,12-diaminododecane). These compounds efficiently cleaved different RNA substrates under physiological conditions at rates three to five times higher than that of artificial ribonucleases described earlier and displayed RNase A-like cleavage specificity. aRNases with the hydrophobic 1,12-diaminododecane linker displayed ribonuclease activity 3-40 times higher than aRNases with the 4,9-dioxa-1,12-diaminododecane linker. The assumed mechanism of RNA cleavage was typical for natural ribonucleases, that is, general acid-base catalysis via the formation of acid/base pairs by functional groups of amino acids present in the aRNases; the pH profile of cleavage confirmed this mechanism. The most active aRNases under study exhibited high antiviral activity and entirely inactivated influenza virus A/WSN/33/(H1N1) after a short incubation period of viral suspension under physiological conditions. PMID:26899594

  7. Whispering galleries and the control of artificial atoms.

    PubMed

    Forrester, Derek Michael; Kusmartsev, Feodor V

    2016-01-01

    Quantum computation using artificial-atoms, such as novel superconducting circuits, can be sensitively controlled by external electromagnetic fields. These fields and the self-fields attributable to the coupled artificial-atoms influence the amount of quantum correlation in the system. However, control elements that can operate without complete destruction of the entanglement of the quantum-bits are difficult to engineer. Here we investigate the possibility of using closely-spaced-linear arrays of metallic-elliptical discs as whispering gallery waveguides to control artificial-atoms. The discs confine and guide radiation through the array with small notches etched into their sides that act as scatterers. We focus on π-ring artificial-atoms, which can generate their own spontaneous fluxes. We find that the micro-discs of the waveguides can be excited by terahertz frequency fields to exhibit whispering-modes and that a quantum-phase-gate composed of π-rings can be operated under their influence. Furthermore, we gauge the level of entanglement through the concurrence measure and show that under certain magnetic conditions a series of entanglement sudden-deaths and revivals occur between the two qubits. This is important for understanding the stability and life-time of qubit operations using, for example, a phase gate in a hybrid of quantum technologies composed of control elements and artificial-atoms. PMID:27122353

  8. Whispering galleries and the control of artificial atoms

    PubMed Central

    Forrester, Derek Michael; Kusmartsev, Feodor V.

    2016-01-01

    Quantum computation using artificial-atoms, such as novel superconducting circuits, can be sensitively controlled by external electromagnetic fields. These fields and the self-fields attributable to the coupled artificial-atoms influence the amount of quantum correlation in the system. However, control elements that can operate without complete destruction of the entanglement of the quantum-bits are difficult to engineer. Here we investigate the possibility of using closely-spaced-linear arrays of metallic-elliptical discs as whispering gallery waveguides to control artificial-atoms. The discs confine and guide radiation through the array with small notches etched into their sides that act as scatterers. We focus on π-ring artificial-atoms, which can generate their own spontaneous fluxes. We find that the micro-discs of the waveguides can be excited by terahertz frequency fields to exhibit whispering-modes and that a quantum-phase-gate composed of π-rings can be operated under their influence. Furthermore, we gauge the level of entanglement through the concurrence measure and show that under certain magnetic conditions a series of entanglement sudden-deaths and revivals occur between the two qubits. This is important for understanding the stability and life-time of qubit operations using, for example, a phase gate in a hybrid of quantum technologies composed of control elements and artificial-atoms. PMID:27122353

  9. Whispering galleries and the control of artificial atoms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forrester, Derek Michael; Kusmartsev, Feodor V.

    2016-04-01

    Quantum computation using artificial-atoms, such as novel superconducting circuits, can be sensitively controlled by external electromagnetic fields. These fields and the self-fields attributable to the coupled artificial-atoms influence the amount of quantum correlation in the system. However, control elements that can operate without complete destruction of the entanglement of the quantum-bits are difficult to engineer. Here we investigate the possibility of using closely-spaced-linear arrays of metallic-elliptical discs as whispering gallery waveguides to control artificial-atoms. The discs confine and guide radiation through the array with small notches etched into their sides that act as scatterers. We focus on π-ring artificial-atoms, which can generate their own spontaneous fluxes. We find that the micro-discs of the waveguides can be excited by terahertz frequency fields to exhibit whispering-modes and that a quantum-phase-gate composed of π-rings can be operated under their influence. Furthermore, we gauge the level of entanglement through the concurrence measure and show that under certain magnetic conditions a series of entanglement sudden-deaths and revivals occur between the two qubits. This is important for understanding the stability and life-time of qubit operations using, for example, a phase gate in a hybrid of quantum technologies composed of control elements and artificial-atoms.

  10. Whispering galleries and the control of artificial atoms.

    PubMed

    Forrester, Derek Michael; Kusmartsev, Feodor V

    2016-04-28

    Quantum computation using artificial-atoms, such as novel superconducting circuits, can be sensitively controlled by external electromagnetic fields. These fields and the self-fields attributable to the coupled artificial-atoms influence the amount of quantum correlation in the system. However, control elements that can operate without complete destruction of the entanglement of the quantum-bits are difficult to engineer. Here we investigate the possibility of using closely-spaced-linear arrays of metallic-elliptical discs as whispering gallery waveguides to control artificial-atoms. The discs confine and guide radiation through the array with small notches etched into their sides that act as scatterers. We focus on π-ring artificial-atoms, which can generate their own spontaneous fluxes. We find that the micro-discs of the waveguides can be excited by terahertz frequency fields to exhibit whispering-modes and that a quantum-phase-gate composed of π-rings can be operated under their influence. Furthermore, we gauge the level of entanglement through the concurrence measure and show that under certain magnetic conditions a series of entanglement sudden-deaths and revivals occur between the two qubits. This is important for understanding the stability and life-time of qubit operations using, for example, a phase gate in a hybrid of quantum technologies composed of control elements and artificial-atoms.

  11. Artificial Intelligence

    SciTech Connect

    Shirai, Y.; Tsujii, Jun-ichi

    1985-01-01

    Based on the Japanese 5th Generation Computer Program, this volume provides coverage of the fundamental concepts and various techniques in the different applications of Artificial Intelligence. Also presented are the methods which can be used to put these concepts and techniques into practice. Explanations are presented of all the basic topics in the field, including the representation of problems; searching techniques; the control of problem solving; programming languages for Al, such as LISP, PLANNER, CONNIVER, and PROLOG; the representation and utilization of knowledge; and the approach to human intelligence.

  12. NASA GES DISC DAAC Satellite Data for GIS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nickless, Darryl; Leptoukh, Gregory; Morahan, Michael; Pollack, Nathan; Savtchenko, Andrey; Teng, William

    2005-01-01

    NASA's Goddard Earth Science (GES) Data and Information Services Center (DISC) Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC) makes available a large and continually growing collection of spatially continuous global satellite observations of environmental parameters. These products include those from the MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) on both Terra and Aqua platforms, and the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM). These data products are well suited for use within Geographic Information Systems (GIS), as both backdrops to cartographic products as well as spatial analysis. However, data format, file size, and other issues have limited their widespread use by traditional GIS users. To address these data usability issues, the GES DISC DAAC recently updated tools and improved documentation of conversion procedures. In addition, the GES DISC DAAC has also been working with a major GIS software vendor to incorporate the ability to read the native Hierarchial Data Format (HDF), the format in which most of the NASA data is stored. The result is the enabling of GIS users to realize the benefit of GES DISC DAAC data without a substantial expenditure in resources to incorporate these data into their GIS. Several documents regarding the potential uses of GES DISC DAAC satellite data in GIS have recently been created. These show the combinations of concurrent data from different satellite products with traditional GIS vector products for given geographic areas. These map products include satellite imagery of Hurricane Isabel and the California wildfires, and can be viewed at http://daac.gsfc.nasa.gov/MODIS/GIS/.

  13. The magnetorotational instability in debris-disc gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kral, Quentin; Latter, Henrik

    2016-09-01

    Debris discs are commonly swathed in gas, which can be observed in UV, in fine structure lines in FIR, and in resolved maps of CO emission. Carbon and oxygen are overabundant in such gas, but it is severely depleted in hydrogen. As a consequence, its ionization fraction is remarkably high, suggesting that magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) processes could be important. In particular, the gas may be subject to the magnetorotational instability (MRI), and indeed, recent modelling of β Pictoris requires an anomalous viscosity to explain the gas's observed radial structure. In this paper, we explore the possibility that the MRI is active in debris-disc gas and responsible for the observed mass transport. We find that non-ideal MHD and dust-gas interactions play a subdominant role, and that linear instability is viable at certain radii. However, owing to low gas densities, the outer parts of the disc could be stabilized by a weak ambient magnetic field, though it is difficult to constrain such a field. Even if the MRI is stabilized by too strong a field, a magnetocentrifugal wind may be launched in its place, and this could lead to equivalent (non-turbulent) transport. Numerical simulations of the vertically stratified MRI in conditions appropriate to the debris-disc gas should be able to determine the nature of the characteristic behaviour at different radii, and decide on the importance of the MRI (and MHD more generally) on the evolution of these discs.

  14. Planet signatures and Size Segregation in Debris Discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thébault, Philippe

    2014-01-01

    The response of a debris disc to a planetary perturber is the result of the complex interplay between gravitational effects, grain collisions and stellar radiation pressure (Stark & Kuchner (2009). We investigate to what extent this response can depart from the pure gravitational case when including grain collisional production and radiation pressure. We use the DyCoSS code (Thébault (2012), designed to study the coupled effect of collisions and dynamics for systems at steady state with one perturbing body. We focus on two outcomes: the 2D surface density profile of the disc+planet system, and the way the Particle Size Distribution (PSD) is spatially segregated within the disc. We consider two set-ups: 1) a narrow ring with an exterior ``shepherding'' planet, and 2) an extended disc in which a planet is embedded. For each case, the planet mass and orbit are explored as free parameters, and an unperturbed ``no-planet'' case is also considered. Another parameter is the disc's collisional activity, as parameterized by its optical depth τ.

  15. Engineered Microporosity: Enhancing the Early Regenerative Potential of Decellularized Temporomandibular Joint Discs

    PubMed Central

    Juran, Cassandra M.; Dolwick, M. Franklin

    2015-01-01

    The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disc is susceptible to numerous pathologies that may lead to structural degradation and jaw dysfunction. The limited treatment options and debilitating nature of severe temporomandibular disorders has been the primary driving force for the introduction and development of TMJ disc tissue engineering as an approach to alleviate this important clinical issue. This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of laser micropatterning (LMP) ex vivo-derived TMJ disc scaffolds to enhance cellular integration, a major limitation to the development of whole tissue implant technology. LMP was incorporated into the decellularized extracellular matrix scaffold structure using a 40 W CO2 laser ablation system to drill an 8×16 pattern with a bore diameter of 120 μm through the scaffold thickness. Disc scaffolds were seeded with human neonatal-derived umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells differentiated into chondrocytes at a density of 900 cells per mm2 and then assessed on days 1, 7, 14, and 21 of culture. Results derived from histology, PicoGreen DNA quantification, and cellular metabolism assays indicate that the LMP scaffolds improve cellular remodeling compared to the unworked scaffold over the 21-day culture period. Mechanical analysis further supports the use of the LMP showing the compressive properties of the LMP constructs closely represent native disc mechanics. The addition of an artificial path of infiltration by LMP culminated in improved chondrocyte adhesion, dispersion, and migration after extended culture aiding in recapitulating the native TMJ disc characteristics. PMID:25319941

  16. Engineered microporosity: enhancing the early regenerative potential of decellularized temporomandibular joint discs.

    PubMed

    Juran, Cassandra M; Dolwick, M Franklin; McFetridge, Peter S

    2015-02-01

    The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disc is susceptible to numerous pathologies that may lead to structural degradation and jaw dysfunction. The limited treatment options and debilitating nature of severe temporomandibular disorders has been the primary driving force for the introduction and development of TMJ disc tissue engineering as an approach to alleviate this important clinical issue. This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of laser micropatterning (LMP) ex vivo-derived TMJ disc scaffolds to enhance cellular integration, a major limitation to the development of whole tissue implant technology. LMP was incorporated into the decellularized extracellular matrix scaffold structure using a 40 W CO2 laser ablation system to drill an 8×16 pattern with a bore diameter of 120 μm through the scaffold thickness. Disc scaffolds were seeded with human neonatal-derived umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells differentiated into chondrocytes at a density of 900 cells per mm(2) and then assessed on days 1, 7, 14, and 21 of culture. Results derived from histology, PicoGreen DNA quantification, and cellular metabolism assays indicate that the LMP scaffolds improve cellular remodeling compared to the unworked scaffold over the 21-day culture period. Mechanical analysis further supports the use of the LMP showing the compressive properties of the LMP constructs closely represent native disc mechanics. The addition of an artificial path of infiltration by LMP culminated in improved chondrocyte adhesion, dispersion, and migration after extended culture aiding in recapitulating the native TMJ disc characteristics.

  17. Artificial Induction of Associative Olfactory Memory by Optogenetic and Thermogenetic Activation of Olfactory Sensory Neurons and Octopaminergic Neurons in Drosophila Larvae

    PubMed Central

    Honda, Takato; Lee, Chi-Yu; Honjo, Ken; Furukubo-Tokunaga, Katsuo

    2016-01-01

    The larval brain of Drosophila melanogaster provides an excellent system for the study of the neurocircuitry mechanism of memory. Recent development of neurogenetic techniques in fruit flies enables manipulations of neuronal activities in freely behaving animals. This protocol describes detailed steps for artificial induction of olfactory associative memory in Drosophila larvae. In this protocol, the natural reward signal is substituted by thermogenetic activation of octopaminergic neurons in the brain. In parallel, the odor signal is substituted by optogenetic activation of a specific class of olfactory receptor neurons. Association of reward and odor stimuli is achieved with the concomitant application of blue light and heat that leads to activation of both sets of neurons in living transgenic larvae. Given its operational simplicity and robustness, this method could be utilized to further our knowledge on the neurocircuitry mechanism of memory in the fly brain. PMID:27445732

  18. Artificial Induction of Associative Olfactory Memory by Optogenetic and Thermogenetic Activation of Olfactory Sensory Neurons and Octopaminergic Neurons in Drosophila Larvae.

    PubMed

    Honda, Takato; Lee, Chi-Yu; Honjo, Ken; Furukubo-Tokunaga, Katsuo

    2016-01-01

    The larval brain of Drosophila melanogaster provides an excellent system for the study of the neurocircuitry mechanism of memory. Recent development of neurogenetic techniques in fruit flies enables manipulations of neuronal activities in freely behaving animals. This protocol describes detailed steps for artificial induction of olfactory associative memory in Drosophila larvae. In this protocol, the natural reward signal is substituted by thermogenetic activation of octopaminergic neurons in the brain. In parallel, the odor signal is substituted by optogenetic activation of a specific class of olfactory receptor neurons. Association of reward and odor stimuli is achieved with the concomitant application of blue light and heat that leads to activation of both sets of neurons in living transgenic larvae. Given its operational simplicity and robustness, this method could be utilized to further our knowledge on the neurocircuitry mechanism of memory in the fly brain. PMID:27445732

  19. Study of the shape of an optical window in a super-resolution state by electromagnetic-thermal coupled simulation: Effects of melting of an active layer in an optical disc

    SciTech Connect

    Sano, Haruyuki; Shima, Takayuki; Kuwahara, Masashi; Fujita, Yoshiya; Uchiyama, Munehisa; Aono, Yoshiyuki

    2014-04-21

    We performed a multi-physics simulation for the propagation of electromagnetic waves and heat conduction in a super-resolution optical disc that includes an active layer of InSb. Because the change in the optical constant of InSb due to the phase transition is taken into account, the melting of the active layer can be realistically simulated in our calculation. It was found that in the case of an incident light power (P) of 2 mW, a profile of the electric field intensity transmitted through the InSb layer has an asymmetric shape with a narrow peak. This beam-narrowing was suggested to be an essential mechanism of the super-resolution, because a narrower light beam allows the detection of a smaller pit structure than the optical diffraction limit. This beam-narrowing was found to be originating from a small molten region produced in the InSb layer, which works as a mask for light exposure.

  20. Ammonia Regulation of Carbon Metabolism in Photosynthesizing Leaf Discs 1

    PubMed Central

    Platt, Steven G.; Plaut, Zvi; Bassham, James A.

    1977-01-01

    Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L., var. El Unico) leaf discs, floating on buffer containing NH4Cl and photosynthesizing with 14CO2, produced more labeled amino acid and less sucrose than did control discs (no added NH4Cl). The level of pyruvate increased and that of phosphoenolpyruvate decreased. These and other changes in levels of labeled compounds led us to conclude that pyruvate kinase was activated by ammonia, resulting in increased transfer of photosynthetically incorporated carbon to synthesis of amino acid skeletons at the expense of sucrose synthesis. Carbon flow through enzymes catalyzing the anaplerotic reactions was apparently stimulated. PMID:16660175

  1. The cellular memory disc of reprogrammed cells.

    PubMed

    Anjamrooz, Seyed Hadi

    2013-04-01

    The crucial facts underlying the low efficiency of cellular reprogramming are poorly understood. Cellular reprogramming occurs in nuclear transfer, induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) formation, cell fusion, and lineage-switching experiments. Despite these advances, there are three fundamental problems to be addressed: (1) the majority of cells cannot be reprogrammed, (2) the efficiency of reprogramming cells is usually low, and (3) the reprogrammed cells developed from a patient's own cells activate immune responses. These shortcomings present major obstacles for using reprogramming approaches in customised cell therapy. In this Perspective, the author synthesises past and present observations in the field of cellular reprogramming to propose a theoretical picture of the cellular memory disc. The current hypothesis is that all cells undergo an endogenous and exogenous holographic memorisation such that parts of the cellular memory dramatically decrease the efficiency of reprogramming cells, act like a barrier against reprogramming in the majority of cells, and activate immune responses. Accordingly, the focus of this review is mainly to describe the cellular memory disc (CMD). Based on the present theory, cellular memory includes three parts: a reprogramming-resistance memory (RRM), a switch-promoting memory (SPM) and a culture-induced memory (CIM). The cellular memory arises genetically, epigenetically and non-genetically and affects cellular behaviours. [corrected].

  2. Peripheral Disc Margin Shape and Internal Disc Derangement: Imaging Correlation in Significantly Painful Discs Identified at Provocation Lumbar Discography

    PubMed Central

    Bartynski, W.S.; Rothfus, W.E.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Annular margin shape is used to characterize lumbar disc abnormality on CT/MR imaging studies. Abnormal discs also have internal derangement including annular degeneration and radial defects. The purpose of this study was to evaluate potential correlation between disc-margin shape and annular internal derangement on post-discogram CT in significantly painful discs encountered at provocation lumbar discography (PLD). Significantly painful discs were encountered at 126 levels in 86 patients (47 male, 39 female) studied by PLD where no prior surgery had been performed and response to intradiscal lidocaine after provocation resulted in either substantial/total relief or no improvement after lidocaine administration. Post-discogram CT and discogram imaging was evaluated for disc-margin characteristics (bulge/protrusion), features of disc internal derangement (radial annular defect [RD: radial tear/fissure/annular gap], annular degeneration) and presence/absence of discographic contrast leakage. In discs with focal protrusion, 50 of 63 (79%) demonstrated Grade 3 RD with 13 (21%) demonstrating severe degenerative change only. In discs with generalized-bulge-only, 48 of 63 (76%) demonstrated degenerative change only (primarily Dallas Grade 3) with 15 of 63 (24%) demonstrating a RD (Dallas Grade 3). Differences were highly statistically significant (p<0.001). Pain elimination with intra-discal lidocaine correlated with discographic contrast leakage (p<0.001). Disc-margin shape correlates with features of internal derangement in significantly painful discs encountered at PLD. Discs with focal protrusion typically demonstrate RD while generalized bulging discs typically demonstrated degenerative changes only (p<0.001). Disc-margin shape may provide an important imaging clue to the cause of chronic discogenic low back pain. PMID:22681741

  3. Peripheral disc margin shape and internal disc derangement: imaging correlation in significantly painful discs identified at provocation lumbar discography.

    PubMed

    Bartynski, W S; Rothfus, W E

    2012-06-01

    Annular margin shape is used to characterize lumbar disc abnormality on CT/MR imaging studies. Abnormal discs also have internal derangement including annular degeneration and radial defects. The purpose of this study was to evaluate potential correlation between disc-margin shape and annular internal derangement on post-discogram CT in significantly painful discs encountered at provocation lumbar discography (PLD). Significantly painful discs were encountered at 126 levels in 86 patients (47 male, 39 female) studied by PLD where no prior surgery had been performed and response to intradiscal lidocaine after provocation resulted in either substantial/total relief or no improvement after lidocaine administration. Post-discogram CT and discogram imaging was evaluated for disc-margin characteristics (bulge/protrusion), features of disc internal derangement (radial annular defect [RD: radial tear/fissure/annular gap], annular degeneration) and presence/absence of discographic contrast leakage. In discs with focal protrusion, 50 of 63 (79%) demonstrated Grade 3 RD with 13 (21%) demonstrating severe degenerative change only. In discs with generalized-bulge-only, 48 of 63 (76%) demonstrated degenerative change only (primarily Dallas Grade 3) with 15 of 63 (24%) demonstrating a RD (Dallas Grade 3). Differences were highly statistically significant (p<0.001). Pain elimination with intra-discal lidocaine correlated with discographic contrast leakage (p<0.001). Disc-margin shape correlates with features of internal derangement in significantly painful discs encountered at PLD. Discs with focal protrusion typically demonstrate RD while generalized bulging discs typically demonstrated degenerative changes only (p<0.001). Disc-margin shape may provide an important imaging clue to the cause of chronic discogenic low back pain. PMID:22681741

  4. Learning the Relationship between the Primary Structure of HIV Envelope Glycoproteins and Neutralization Activity of Particular Antibodies by Using Artificial Neural Networks

    PubMed Central

    Buiu, Cătălin; Putz, Mihai V.; Avram, Speranta

    2016-01-01

    The dependency between the primary structure of HIV envelope glycoproteins (ENV) and the neutralization data for given antibodies is very complicated and depends on a large number of factors, such as the binding affinity of a given antibody for a given ENV protein, and the intrinsic infection kinetics of the viral strain. This paper presents a first approach to learning these dependencies using an artificial feedforward neural network which is trained to learn from experimental data. The results presented here demonstrate that the trained neural network is able to generalize on new viral strains and to predict reliable values of neutralizing activities of given antibodies against HIV-1. PMID:27727189

  5. An Analysis of Burst Disc Pressure Instability

    SciTech Connect

    S. L. Robinson; B. C. Odegard, Jr.; N. r. Moody; S. H. Goods

    2000-06-01

    During the development stage of the 1X Acorn burst disc, burst pressure test results exhibited an unexpected increase of 8 to 14% over times of 90--100 days from initial fabrication. This increase is a concern where design constraints require stability. The disc material, 316L stainless steel sheet, is formed to a dome-like geometry and scored to produce a thin-walled, high-strength ligament. The fracture events controlling burst occur in that ligament. Thus it has been characterized both for tensile properties and microstructure through nanoindentation, magnetic measurements, optical and transmission electron microscopy. These results compare favorably with finite element simulation of the properties of the ligament. The ligament exhibits a highly heterogeneous microstructure; its small volume and microstructural heterogeneity make it difficult to identify which microstructural feature controls fracture and hence burst pressure. Bulk mechanical test specimens were fabricated to emulate mid-ligament properties, and aged at both room and elevated temperatures to characterize and accelerate the temporal behavior of the burst disc. Property changes included yield and ultimate tensile strength increases, and fracture strain decreases with aging. Specimens were subjected to a reversion anneal identical to that given the burst disc to eliminate the martensite phase formed during rolling. Reversion-annealed samples exhibited no change in properties in room temperature or accelerated aging, showing that the reversion-anneal eliminated the aging phenomenon. Aging was analyzed in terms of diffusion controlled precipitate growth kinetics, showing that carbon migration to dislocations is consistent with the strength increases. A vacancy-assisted diffusion mechanism for carbon transport is proposed, giving rise to rapid aging, which replaces interstitial carbon diffusion until excess vacancies from deformation are consumed. Mechanical activation parameters in stress relaxation

  6. Determination of the intervertebral disc space from CT images of the lumbar spine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korez, Robert; Å tern, Darko; Likar, Boštjan; Pernuš, Franjo; Vrtovec, Tomaž

    2014-03-01

    Degenerative changes of the intervertebral disc are among the most common causes of low back pain, where for individuals with significant symptoms surgery may be needed. One of the interventions is the total disc replacement surgery, where the degenerated disc is replaced by an artificial implant. For designing implants with good bone contact and continuous force distribution, the morphology of the intervertebral disc space and vertebral body endplates is of considerable importance. In this study we propose a method for the determination of the intervertebral disc space from three-dimensional (3D) computed tomography (CT) images of the lumbar spine. The first step of the proposed method is the construction of a model of vertebral bodies in the lumbar spine. For this purpose, a chain of five elliptical cylinders is initialized in the 3D image and then deformed to resemble vertebral bodies by introducing 25 shape parameters. The parameters are obtained by aligning the chain to the vertebral bodies in the CT image according to image intensity and appearance information. The determination of the intervertebral disc space is finally achieved by finding the planes that fit the endplates of the obtained parametric 3D models, and placing points in the space between the planes of adjacent vertebrae that enable surface reconstruction of the intervertebral disc space. The morphometric analysis of images from 20 subjects yielded 11:3 +/- 2:6, 12:1 +/- 2:4, 12:8 +/- 2:0 and 12:9 +/- 2:7 cm3 in terms of L1-L2, L2-L3, L3-L4 and L4-L5 intervertebral disc space volume, respectively.

  7. Artificial gravity.

    PubMed

    Scott, William B

    2005-04-25

    NASA's Artificial Gravity program consists of a team of researchers from Wyle Laboratories, NASA Johnson Space Center, and the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). The short-radius centrifuge (SRC), built by Wyle Laboratories, will be integrated with UTMB's conducted bedrest studies, which mimic the detrimental effects of weightlessness (or microgravity). Bedrest subjects will be spun on the SRC at various accelerations and for various time periods, while being monitored medically. Parameters such as bone loss, muscle atrophy, balance control, and oxygen consumption will then be compared in order to research ways of mitigating the impact on astronauts' physiology. Other potential benefits from these studies extend to population groups on Earth, such as bedridden patients. PMID:15852559

  8. Genetic Factors in Intervertebral Disc Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Yi; Egan, Brian; Wang, Jinxi

    2016-01-01

    Low back pain (LBP) is a major cause of disability and imposes huge economic burdens on human society worldwide. Among many factors responsible for LBP, intervertebral disc degeneration (IDD) is the most common disorder and is a target for intervention. The etiology of IDD is complex and its mechanism is still not completely understood. Many factors such as aging, spine deformities and diseases, spine injuries, and genetic factors are involved in the pathogenesis of IDD. In this review, we will focus on the recent advances in studies on the most promising and extensively examined genetic factors associated with IDD in humans. A number of genetic defects have been correlated with structural and functional changes within the intervertebral disc (IVD), which may compromise the disc’s mechanical properties and metabolic activities. These genetic and proteomic studies have begun to shed light on the molecular basis of IDD, suggesting that genetic factors are important contributors to the onset and progression of IDD. By continuing to improve our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of IDD, specific early diagnosis and more effective treatments for this disabling disease will be possible in the future. PMID:27617275

  9. Operative Management of Lumbar Degenerative Disc Disease

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Yu Chao; Osti, Orso Lorenzo

    2016-01-01

    Lumbar degenerative disc disease is extremely common. Current evidence supports surgery in carefully selected patients who have failed non-operative treatment and do not exhibit any substantial psychosocial overlay. Fusion surgery employing the correct grafting and stabilization techniques has long-term results demonstrating successful clinical outcomes. However, the best approach for fusion remains debatable. There is some evidence supporting the more complex, technically demanding and higher risk interbody fusion techniques for the younger, active patients or patients with a higher risk of non-union. Lumbar disc arthroplasty and hybrid techniques are still relatively novel procedures despite promising short-term and mid-term outcomes. Long-term studies demonstrating superiority over fusion are required before these techniques may be recommended to replace fusion as the gold standard. Novel stem cell approaches combined with tissue engineering therapies continue to be developed in expectation of improving clinical outcomes. Results with appropriate follow-up are not yet available to indicate if such techniques are safe, cost-effective and reliable in the long-term. PMID:27559465

  10. Operative Management of Lumbar Degenerative Disc Disease.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yu Chao; Zotti, Mario Giuseppe Tedesco; Osti, Orso Lorenzo

    2016-08-01

    Lumbar degenerative disc disease is extremely common. Current evidence supports surgery in carefully selected patients who have failed non-operative treatment and do not exhibit any substantial psychosocial overlay. Fusion surgery employing the correct grafting and stabilization techniques has long-term results demonstrating successful clinical outcomes. However, the best approach for fusion remains debatable. There is some evidence supporting the more complex, technically demanding and higher risk interbody fusion techniques for the younger, active patients or patients with a higher risk of non-union. Lumbar disc arthroplasty and hybrid techniques are still relatively novel procedures despite promising short-term and mid-term outcomes. Long-term studies demonstrating superiority over fusion are required before these techniques may be recommended to replace fusion as the gold standard. Novel stem cell approaches combined with tissue engineering therapies continue to be developed in expectation of improving clinical outcomes. Results with appropriate follow-up are not yet available to indicate if such techniques are safe, cost-effective and reliable in the long-term. PMID:27559465

  11. [Innervation of the intervertebral disc].

    PubMed

    García-Cosamalón, José; Fernández-Fernández, Javier; González-Martínez, Emilio; Ibáñez-Plágaro, Javier; Robla Costales, Javier; Martínez-Madrigal, Milton; López Muñíz, Alfonso; del Valle, Miguel Enrique; Vega, José Antonio

    2013-01-01

    Until very recently, intervertebral disc innervation was a subject of considerable debate. Nowadays, the introduction of inmunohistochemical techniques associated to specific antibodies and studies with retrograde tracers in nerves have allowed greater understanding of disc innervation in physiological and pathological conditions and also endings characteristics and their patterns of distribution in both situations. The existing controversies regarding structural basis of discogenic pain, have raised the interest of knowing the influence of innervation in back pain from discal origin and its characteristics. Today, we know that pathologic neoinnervation accompanying radial fissures is an important factor in the genesis of discogenic pain; within a complex mechanism in which other neurobiomechemical, inflammatory and biomechanical factors are involved. PMID:23582224

  12. Reconstitution of Heme Enzymes with Artificial Metalloporphyrinoids.

    PubMed

    Oohora, K; Hayashi, T

    2016-01-01

    An important strategy used in engineering of hemoproteins to generate artificial enzymes involves replacement of heme with an artificial cofactor after removal of the native heme cofactor under acidic conditions. Replacement of heme in an enzyme with a nonnatural metalloporphyrinoid can significantly alter the reactivity of the enzyme. This chapter describes the design and synthesis of three types of artificial metalloporphyrinoid cofactors consisting of mono-, di-, and tri-anionic ligands (tetradehydrocorrin, porphycene, and corrole, respectively). In addition, practical procedures for the preparation of apo-hemoproteins, incorporation of artificial cofactors, and characterization techniques are presented. Furthermore, the representative catalytic activities of artificial enzymes generated by reconstitution of hemoproteins are summarized. PMID:27586344

  13. The Aerodynamics of a Flying Sports Disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potts, Jonathan R.; Crowther, William J.

    2001-11-01

    The flying sports disc is a spin-stabilised axi-symmetric wing of quite remarkable design. A typical disc has an approximate elliptical cross-section and hollowed out under-side cavity, such as the Frisbee(TM) disc. An experimental study of flying disc aerodynamics, including both spinning and non-spinning tests, has been carried out in the wind tunnel. Load measurements, pressure data and flow visualisation techniques have enabled an explanation of the flow physics and provided data for free-flight simulations. A computer simulation that predicts free-flight trajectories from a given set of initial conditions was used to investigate the dynamics of a flying disc. This includes a six-degree of freedom mathematical model of disc flight mechanics, with aerodynamic coefficients derived from experimental data. A flying sports disc generates lift through forward velocity just like a conventional wing. The lift contributed by spin is insignificant and does not provide nearly enough down force to support hover. Without spin, the disc tumbles ground-ward under the influence of an unstable aerodynamic pitching moment. From a backhand throw however, spin is naturally given to the disc. The unchanged pitching moment now results in roll, due to gyroscopic precession, stabilising the disc in free-flight.

  14. Proto-planetary disc evolution and dispersal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosotti, Giovanni Pietro

    2015-05-01

    Planets form from gas and dust discs in orbit around young stars. The timescale for planet formation is constrained by the lifetime of these discs. The properties of the formed planetary systems depend thus on the evolution and final dispersal of the discs, which is the main topic of this thesis. Observations reveal the existence of a class of discs called "transitional", which lack dust in their inner regions. They are thought to be the last stage before the complete disc dispersal, and hence they may provide the key to understanding the mechanisms behind disc evolution. X-ray photoevaporation and planet formation have been studied as possible physical mechanisms responsible for the final dispersal of discs. However up to now, these two phenomena have been studied separately, neglecting any possible feedback or interaction. In this thesis we have investigated what is the interplay between these two processes. We show that the presence of a giant planet in a photo-evaporating disc can significantly shorten its lifetime, by cutting the inner regions from the mass reservoir in the exterior of the disc. This mechanism produces transition discs that for a given mass accretion rate have larger holes than in models considering only X-ray photo-evaporation, constituting a possible route to the formation of accreting transition discs with large holes. These discs are found in observations and still constitute a puzzle for the theory. Inclusion of the phenomenon called "thermal sweeping", a violent instability that can destroy a whole disc in as little as 10 4 years, shows that the outer disc left can be very short-lived (depending on the X-ray luminosity of the star), possibly explaining why very few non accreting transition discs are observed. However the mechanism does not seem to be efficient enough to reconcile with observations. In this thesis we also show that X-ray photo-evaporation naturally explains the observed correlation between stellar masses and accretion

  15. A strong and stretchable self-healing film with self-activated pressure sensitivity for potential artificial skin applications

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Chengyi; Huang, Tao; Wang, Hongzhi; Yu, Hao; Zhang, Qinghong; Li, Yaogang

    2013-01-01

    Artificial skin, which mimics the functions of natural skin, will be very important in the future for robots used by humans in daily life. However, combining skin's pressure sensitivity and mechanical self-healing properties in a man-made material remains a challenging task. Here, we show that graphene and polymers can be integrated into a thin film which mimics both the mechanical self-healing and pressure sensitivity behavior of natural skin without any external power supply. Its ultimate strain and tensile strength are even two and ten times larger than the corresponding values of human skin, respectively. It also demonstrates highly stable sensitivity to a very light touch (0.02 kPa), even in bending or stretching states. PMID:24190511

  16. Superficial groundwater contamination by artificial radionuclides by the nuclear site of Saluggia (Vercelli, Italy): radiological monitoring activities.

    PubMed

    Porzio, Laura

    2009-12-01

    During the last 15 y, by the Saluggia (Vercelli, Italy) nuclear site, episodes of contamination of the superficial groundwater happened due to artificial radionuclides. The local network of radiological monitoring around the nuclear site, managed by Arpa Piemonte from the late 1980s, highlighted the presence of (60)Co, (90)Sr, (137)Cs and (3)H during this period. The object of this paper was to give particular evidence not to analytical aspects, but to the methodical approach used to solve the problems that arose. In fact, the intrinsic hydro-geological vulnerability of the zone, the typology and conditions of the plants (all very old) and the presence of the 'Acquedotto del Monferrato' tap water well field, one of the most important in Piemonte, at approximately 2 km downstream of the site, made the situation very difficult to approach.

  17. A strong and stretchable self-healing film with self-activated pressure sensitivity for potential artificial skin applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hou, Chengyi; Huang, Tao; Wang, Hongzhi; Yu, Hao; Zhang, Qinghong; Li, Yaogang

    2013-11-01

    Artificial skin, which mimics the functions of natural skin, will be very important in the future for robots used by humans in daily life. However, combining skin's pressure sensitivity and mechanical self-healing properties in a man-made material remains a challenging task. Here, we show that graphene and polymers can be integrated into a thin film which mimics both the mechanical self-healing and pressure sensitivity behavior of natural skin without any external power supply. Its ultimate strain and tensile strength are even two and ten times larger than the corresponding values of human skin, respectively. It also demonstrates highly stable sensitivity to a very light touch (0.02 kPa), even in bending or stretching states.

  18. A strong and stretchable self-healing film with self-activated pressure sensitivity for potential artificial skin applications.

    PubMed

    Hou, Chengyi; Huang, Tao; Wang, Hongzhi; Yu, Hao; Zhang, Qinghong; Li, Yaogang

    2013-01-01

    Artificial skin, which mimics the functions of natural skin, will be very important in the future for robots used by humans in daily life. However, combining skin's pressure sensitivity and mechanical self-healing properties in a man-made material remains a challenging task. Here, we show that graphene and polymers can be integrated into a thin film which mimics both the mechanical self-healing and pressure sensitivity behavior of natural skin without any external power supply. Its ultimate strain and tensile strength are even two and ten times larger than the corresponding values of human skin, respectively. It also demonstrates highly stable sensitivity to a very light touch (0.02 kPa), even in bending or stretching states. PMID:24190511

  19. Disc wear and entrapment in a Starr-Edwards mitral caged-disc valve.

    PubMed

    Aoyagi, Shigeaki; Fukunaga, Shuji; Arinaga, Koichi

    2011-07-01

    A case of wear and entrapment of a polyethylene disc observed in a Starr-Edwards (SE) mitral caged-disc valve at 37 years after implantation is reported. A 66-year-old woman who had undergone mitral valve replacement with a SE disc valve 37 years previously was admitted to the authors' hospital. Cinefluoroscopy showed the polyethylene disc of the SE valve to have impinged against a calcified mass on the left ventricular posterior wall, causing a tipping motion of the disc during opening. The valve was successfully replaced at surgery. A macroscopic examination of the excised valve revealed wear of the polyethylene disc at sites where the disc abutted the cage struts, and where it impinged on the calcified mass. The long-term durability of the SE caged-disc valves has been favorable; however, when implanted for over 20 years, they should be carefully followed up.

  20. Alteration of blue pigment in artificial iris in ocular prosthesis: effect of paint, drying method and artificial aging.

    PubMed

    Goiato, Marcelo Coelho; Fernandes, Aline Úrsula Rocha; dos Santos, Daniela Micheline; Hadadd, Marcela Filié; Moreno, Amália; Pesqueira, Aldiéris Alves

    2011-02-01

    The artificial iris is the structure responsible for the dissimulation and aesthetics of ocular prosthesis. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the color stability of artificial iris of microwaveable polymerized ocular prosthesis, as a function of paint type, drying method and accelerated aging. A total of 40 discs of microwaveable polymerized acrylic resin were fabricated, and divided according to the blue paint type (n = 5): hydrosoluble acrylic, nitrocellulose automotive, hydrosoluble gouache and oil paints. Paints where dried either at natural or at infrared light bulb method. Each specimen was constituted of one disc in colorless acrylic resin and another colored with a basic sclera pigment. Painting was performed in one surface of one of the discs. The specimens were submitted to an artificial aging chamber under ultraviolet light, during 1008 h. A reflective spectrophotometer was used to evaluate color changes. Data were evaluated by 3-way repeated-measures ANOVA and the Tukey HSD test (α = 0.05). All paints suffered color alteration. The oil paint presented the highest color resistance to artificial aging regardless of drying method. PMID:21081281

  1. Artificial neural networks in neurosurgery.

    PubMed

    Azimi, Parisa; Mohammadi, Hasan Reza; Benzel, Edward C; Shahzadi, Sohrab; Azhari, Shirzad; Montazeri, Ali

    2015-03-01

    Artificial neural networks (ANNs) effectively analyze non-linear data sets. The aimed was A review of the relevant published articles that focused on the application of ANNs as a tool for assisting clinical decision-making in neurosurgery. A literature review of all full publications in English biomedical journals (1993-2013) was undertaken. The strategy included a combination of key words 'artificial neural networks', 'prognostic', 'brain', 'tumor tracking', 'head', 'tumor', 'spine', 'classification' and 'back pain' in the title and abstract of the manuscripts using the PubMed search engine. The major findings are summarized, with a focus on the application of ANNs for diagnostic and prognostic purposes. Finally, the future of ANNs in neurosurgery is explored. A total of 1093 citations were identified and screened. In all, 57 citations were found to be relevant. Of these, 50 articles were eligible for inclusion in this review. The synthesis of the data showed several applications of ANN in neurosurgery, including: (1) diagnosis and assessment of disease progression in low back pain, brain tumours and primary epilepsy; (2) enhancing clinically relevant information extraction from radiographic images, intracranial pressure processing, low back pain and real-time tumour tracking; (3) outcome prediction in epilepsy, brain metastases, lumbar spinal stenosis, lumbar disc herniation, childhood hydrocephalus, trauma mortality, and the occurrence of symptomatic cerebral vasospasm in patients with aneurysmal subarachnoid haemorrhage; (4) the use in the biomechanical assessments of spinal disease. ANNs can be effectively employed for diagnosis, prognosis and outcome prediction in neurosurgery.

  2. Multi-bioindicators to assess soil microbial activity in the context of an artificial groundwater recharge with treated wastewater: a large-scale pilot experiment.

    PubMed

    Michel, Caroline; Joulian, Catherine; Ollivier, Patrick; Nyteij, Audrey; Cote, Rémi; Surdyk, Nicolas; Hellal, Jennifer; Casanova, Joel; Besnard, Katia; Rampnoux, Nicolas; Garrido, Francis

    2014-06-28

    In the context of artificial groundwater recharge, a reactive soil column at pilot-scale (4.5 m depth and 3 m in diameter) fed by treated wastewater was designed to evaluate soil filtration ability. Here, as a part of this project, the impact of treated wastewater filtration on soil bacterial communities and the soil's biological ability for wastewater treatment as well as the relevance of the use of multi-bioindicators were studied as a function of depth and time. Biomass; bacterial 16S rRNA gene diversity fingerprints; potential nitrifying, denitrifying, and sulfate-reducing activities; and functional gene (amo, nir, nar, and dsr) detection were analyzed to highlight the real and potential microbial activity and diversity within the soil column. These bioindicators show that topsoil (0 to 20 cm depth) was the more active and the more impacted by treated wastewater filtration. Nitrification was the main activity in the pilot. No sulfate-reducing activity or dsr genes were detected during the first 6 months of wastewater application. Denitrification was also absent, but genes of denitrifying bacteria were detected, suggesting that the denitrifying process may occur rapidly if adequate chemical conditions are favored within the soil column. Results also underline that a dry period (20 days without any wastewater supply) significantly impacted soil bacterial diversity, leading to a decrease of enzyme activities and biomass. Finally, our work shows that treated wastewater filtration leads to a modification of the bacterial genetic and functional structures in topsoil.

  3. On the evolution of the protolunar disc.

    PubMed

    Ward, William R

    2014-09-13

    The structure and viscous evolution of a post-impact, protolunar disc is examined. The equations for a silicate disc in two-phase (vapour-liquid) equilibrium are employed to derive an analytical solution to vertical structure. Both a vertically mixed phase disc and a stratified disc, where a magma layer exists in the mid-plane surrounded by a vapour reservoir, are considered. The former largely reproduces the low gas mass fraction, x≪1, profiles of the disc described in earlier literature that proposed that the disc would hover on the brink of gravitational instability. In the latter, the vapour layer has x∼1 and is generally gravitationally stable, while the magma layer is vigorously unstable. The viscous evolution of the stratified model is then explored. Initially, the disc quickly settles to a quasi-steady state with a vapour reservoir containing the majority of the disc mass. The magma layer viscously spreads on a time scale of approximately 3-4 years, during which vapour continuously condenses into droplets that settle to the mid-plane, maintaining the magma surface density in spite of disc spreading. Material flowing inwards is accreted by the Earth; material flowing outwards past the Roche boundary can become incorporated into accreting moonlets. This evolution persists until the vapour reservoir is depleted in approximately 50-100 years, depending on its initial mass. PMID:25114314

  4. The quiescent phase of galactic disc growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aumer, Michael; Binney, James; Schönrich, Ralph

    2016-07-01

    We perform a series of controlled N-body simulations of growing disc galaxies within non-growing, live dark matter haloes of varying mass and concentration. Our initial conditions include either a low-mass disc or a compact bulge. New stellar particles are continuously added on near-circular orbits to the existing disc, so spiral structure is continuously excited. To study the effect of combined spiral and giant molecular cloud (GMC) heating on the discs, we introduce massive, short-lived particles that sample a GMC mass function. An isothermal gas component is introduced for a subset of the models. We perform a resolution study and vary parameters governing the GMC population, the histories of star formation and radial scale growth. Models with GMCs and standard values for the disc mass and halo density provide the right level of self-gravity to explain the age-velocity dispersion relation of the solar neighbourhood (Snhd). GMC heating generates remarkably exponential vertical profiles with scaleheights that are radially constant and agree with observations of galactic thin discs. GMCs are also capable of significantly delaying bar formation. The amount of spiral-induced radial migration agrees with what is required for the metallicity distribution of the Snhd. However, in our standard models, the outward-migrating populations are not hot enough vertically to create thick discs. Thick discs can form in models with high baryon fractions, but the corresponding bars are too long, the young stellar populations too hot and the discs flare considerably.

  5. Accretion Discs Show Their True Colours

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2008-07-01

    Quasars are the brilliant cores of remote galaxies, at the hearts of which lie supermassive black holes that can generate enough power to outshine the Sun a trillion times. These mighty power sources are fuelled by interstellar gas, thought to be sucked into the hole from a surrounding 'accretion disc'. A paper in this week's issue of the journal Nature, partly based on observations collected with ESO's Very Large Telescope, verifies a long-standing prediction about the intensely luminous radiation emitted by these accretion discs. Uncovering the disc ESO PR Photo 21/08 Uncovering the inner disc "Astronomers were puzzled by the fact that the best models of these discs couldn't quite be reconciled with some of the observations, in particular, with the fact that these discs did not appear as blue as they should be," explains lead-author Makoto Kishimoto. Such a discrepancy could be the signal that there was something very wrong with the models. With his colleagues, he investigated this discrepancy by studying the polarised light from six quasars. This enabled them to demonstrate that the disc spectrum is as blue as predicted. "The crucial observational difficulty here has been that the disc is surrounded by a much larger torus containing hot dust, whose light partly outshines that of the disc," says Kishimoto. "Because the light coming from the disc is scattered in the disc vicinity and thus polarised, by observing only polarised light from the quasars, one can uncover the buried light from the disc." In a similar way that a fisherman would wear polarised sunglasses to help get rid of the glare from the water surface and allow him to see more clearly under the water, the filter on the telescope allowed the astronomers to see beyond surrounding clouds of dust and gas to the blue colour of the disc in infrared light. The observations were done with the FORS and ISAAC instruments on one of the 8.2-m Unit Telescopes of ESO's Very Large Telescope, located in the Atacama

  6. Sonic hedgehog functions upstream of disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (disc1): implications for mental illness

    PubMed Central

    Boyd, Penelope J.; Cunliffe, Vincent T.; Roy, Sudipto; Wood, Jonathan D.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT DISRUPTED-IN-SCHIZOPHRENIA (DISC1) has been one of the most intensively studied genetic risk factors for mental illness since it was discovered through positional mapping of a translocation breakpoint in a large Scottish family where a balanced chromosomal translocation was found to segregate with schizophrenia and affective disorders. While the evidence for it being central to disease pathogenesis in the original Scottish family is compelling, recent genome-wide association studies have not found evidence for common variants at the DISC1 locus being associated with schizophrenia in the wider population. It may therefore be the case that DISC1 provides an indication of biological pathways that are central to mental health issues and functional studies have shown that it functions in multiple signalling pathways. However, there is little information regarding factors that function upstream of DISC1 to regulate its expression and function. We herein demonstrate that Sonic hedgehog (Shh) signalling promotes expression of disc1 in the zebrafish brain. Expression of disc1 is lost in smoothened mutants that have a complete loss of Shh signal transduction, and elevated in patched mutants which have constitutive activation of Shh signalling. We previously demonstrated that disc1 knockdown has a dramatic effect on the specification of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPC) in the hindbrain and Shh signalling is known to be essential for the specification of these cells. We show that disc1 is prominently expressed in olig2-positive midline progenitor cells that are absent in smo mutants, while cyclopamine treatment blocks disc1 expression in these cells and mimics the effect of disc1 knock down on OPC specification. Various features of a number of psychiatric conditions could potentially arise through aberrant Hedgehog signalling. We therefore suggest that altered Shh signalling may be an important neurodevelopmental factor in the pathobiology of mental illness. PMID

  7. Use of adipose stem cells and polylactide discs for tissue engineering of the temporomandibular joint disc

    PubMed Central

    Mäenpää, Katja; Ellä, Ville; Mauno, Jari; Kellomäki, Minna; Suuronen, Riitta; Ylikomi, Timo; Miettinen, Susanna

    2010-01-01

    There is currently no suitable replacement for damaged temporomandibular joint (TMJ) discs after discectomy. In the present study, we fabricated bilayer biodegradable polylactide (PLA) discs comprising a non-woven mat of poly(L/D)lactide (P(L/D)LA) 96/4 and a P(L/DL)LA 70/30 membrane plate. The PLA disc was examined in combination with adipose stem cells (ASCs) for tissue engineering of the fibrocartilaginous TMJ disc in vitro. ASCs were cultured in parallel in control and chondrogenic medium for a maximum of six weeks. Relative expression of the genes, aggrecan, type I collagen and type II collagen present in the TMJ disc extracellular matrix increased in the ASC-seeded PLA discs in the chondrogenic medium. The hypertrophic marker, type X collagen, was moderately induced. Alcian blue staining showed accumulation of sulphated glycosaminoglycans. ASC differentiation in the PLA discs was close to that observed in pellet cultures. Comparison of the mRNA levels revealed that the degree of ASC differentiation was lower than that in TMJ disc-derived cells and tissue. The pellet format supported the phenotype of the TMJ disc-derived cells under chondrogenic conditions and also enhanced their hyalinization potential, which is considered part of the TMJ disc degeneration process. Accordingly, the combination of ASCs and PLA discs has potential for the development of a tissue-engineered TMJ disc replacement. PMID:19474082

  8. Total Disc Replacement in Lumbar Degenerative Disc Diseases.

    PubMed

    Park, Chun Kun

    2015-11-01

    More than 10 years have passed since lumbar total disc replacement (LTDR) was introduced for the first time to the world market for the surgical management of lumbar degenerative disc disease (DDD). It seems like the right time to sum up the relevant results in order to understand where LTDR stands on now, and is heading forward to. The pathogenesis of DDD has been currently settled, but diagnosis and managements are still controversial. Fusion is recognized as golden standard of surgical managements but has various kinds of shortcomings. Lately, LTDR has been expected to replace fusion surgery. A great deal of LTDR reports has come out. Among them, more than 5-year follow-up prospective randomized controlled studies including USA IDE trials were expected to elucidate whether for LTDR to have therapeutic benefit compared to fusion. The results of these studies revealed that LTDR was not inferior to fusion. Most of clinical studies dealing with LTDR revealed that there was no strong evidence for preventive effect of LTDR against symptomatic degenerative changes of adjacent segment disease. LTDR does not have shortcomings associated with fusion. However, it has a potentiality of the new complications to occur, which surgeons have never experienced in fusion surgeries. Consequently, longer follow-up should be necessary as yet to confirm the maintenance of improved surgical outcome and to observe any very late complications. LTDR still may get a chance to establish itself as a substitute of fusion both nominally and virtually if it eases the concerns listed above. PMID:26713139

  9. Total Disc Replacement in Lumbar Degenerative Disc Diseases

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    More than 10 years have passed since lumbar total disc replacement (LTDR) was introduced for the first time to the world market for the surgical management of lumbar degenerative disc disease (DDD). It seems like the right time to sum up the relevant results in order to understand where LTDR stands on now, and is heading forward to. The pathogenesis of DDD has been currently settled, but diagnosis and managements are still controversial. Fusion is recognized as golden standard of surgical managements but has various kinds of shortcomings. Lately, LTDR has been expected to replace fusion surgery. A great deal of LTDR reports has come out. Among them, more than 5-year follow-up prospective randomized controlled studies including USA IDE trials were expected to elucidate whether for LTDR to have therapeutic benefit compared to fusion. The results of these studies revealed that LTDR was not inferior to fusion. Most of clinical studies dealing with LTDR revealed that there was no strong evidence for preventive effect of LTDR against symptomatic degenerative changes of adjacent segment disease. LTDR does not have shortcomings associated with fusion. However, it has a potentiality of the new complications to occur, which surgeons have never experienced in fusion surgeries. Consequently, longer follow-up should be necessary as yet to confirm the maintenance of improved surgical outcome and to observe any very late complications. LTDR still may get a chance to establish itself as a substitute of fusion both nominally and virtually if it eases the concerns listed above. PMID:26713139

  10. Clinical Features of Herniated Disc at Cervicothoracic Junction Level Treated by Anterior Approach

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jun Gue; Kim, Hyeun Sung; Ju, Chang Il

    2016-01-01

    Objective The anterior approach for C7-T1 disc herniation may be challenging because of obstruction by the manubrium and the narrow operative field. This study aimed to investigate the clinical and neurological outcomes of anterior approach for C7-T1 disc herniation. Methods We retrospectively evaluated 13 patients who underwent the anterior approach for C7-T1 disc herniation by a single surgeon within a period of 11 years (2003-2014). The minimum follow-up duration was 6 months. We describe the clinical presentation, radiographic findings, neurological outcome, and related complications. Results Of 372 patients with single-level anterior discectomy and fusion or artificial disc replacement for cervical disc herniation, 13 (3.5%) had C7-T1 disc herniation. The main clinical presentation was unilateral motor weakness in intrinsic hand muscles (11 patients), along with numbness, pain, and tingling sensation that radiate down the arm to the little finger. Most of the patients improved after surgery via the anterior approach. Ten patients underwent successful anterior discectomy and fusion by the standard supramanubrial Smith-Robinson approach, but 2 needed additional manubriotomy and sternotomy. In 1 patient, we performed surgery at a wrong level because the correct level was difficult to identify intraoperatively. Two patients had transient vocal dysfunction, but none had major complications related to injuries of the great vessels such as the thoracic duct or esophagus. Conclusion For patients who require direct anterior decompression for C7-T1 disc herniation, the anterior approach is relatively feasible. However, care should be taken to overcome physical constraints by the manubrium and slope. PMID:27437013

  11. The dynamics of inner dead-zone boundaries in protoplanetary discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Latter, Henrik N.; Balbus, Steven

    2012-08-01

    In protoplanetary discs, the inner radial boundary between the MRI turbulent ('active') and MRI quiescent ('dead') zones plays an important role in models of the disc evolution and in some planet formation scenarios. In reality, this boundary is not well-defined: thermal heating from the star in a passive disc yields a transition radius close to the star (<0.1 au), whereas if the disc is already MRI active, it can self-consistently maintain the requisite temperatures out to a transition radius of roughly 1 au. Moreover, the interface may not be static; it may be highly fluctuating or else unstable. In this paper, we study a reduced model of the dynamics of the active/dead zone interface that mimics several important aspects of a real disc system. We find that MRI-transition fronts propagate inwards (a 'dead front' suppressing the MRI) if they are initially at the larger transition radius, or propagate outwards (an 'active front' igniting the MRI) if starting from the smaller transition radius. In both cases, the front stalls at a well-defined intermediate radius, where it remains in a quasi-static equilibrium. We propose that it is this new, intermediate stalling radius that functions as the true boundary between the active and dead zones in protoplanetary discs. These dynamics are likely implicated in observations of variable accretion, such as FU Ori outbursts, as well as in those planet formation theories that require the accumulation of solid material at the dead/active interface.

  12. Changes in flexion-relaxation phenomenon and lumbo-pelvic kinematics following lumbar disc replacement surgery

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background A single group prospective study. Disc prostheses are believed to contribute to the restoration of the segmental movement and the preservation of the adjacent segments. The study’s main objective was to determine if changes in neuromuscular patterns assessed using the flexion-relaxation phenomenon (FRP) can be observed following disc replacement surgery. Methods Fifteen subjects participated in this study; they were evaluated before and after lumbar disc replacement surgery. Both assessments included ten repetitions of a trunk flexion and extension movement (with and without a load), where the surface electromyography (EMG) and kinematic data were recorded. Results Following the disc replacement procedure (17.3 weeks ± 8.4), participants reported a significant reduction in their ODI and FABQ - physical activity scores. Increases in pelvic flexion as well as in erector spinae (ES) muscle activity at L5 in the flexion phase were observed. Following the disc replacement surgery, ES activity at L2 decreased during the quiet standing position. Conclusion The results of this study suggest that although improvements in disability scores and fear-avoidance related to physical activities scores were noted after a disc replacement surgery, the lumbar ROM was not modified. Nevertheless, a significant increase in the hip ROM during the flexion-extension task as well as an increase in ES muscle activity in flexion was observed following surgery. The VAS, FABQ I and ODQ scores were positively correlated with change in the muscular activities during the FRP. PMID:23842284

  13. On the survival of zombie vortices in protoplanetary discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lesur, Geoffroy R. J.; Latter, Henrik

    2016-11-01

    Recently it has been proposed that the zombie vortex instability (ZVI) could precipitate hydrodynamical activity and angular momentum transport in unmagnetized regions of protoplanetary discs, also known as `dead zones'. In this Letter we scrutinize, with high-resolution 3D spectral simulations, the onset and survival of this instability in the presence of viscous and thermal physics. First, we find that the ZVI is strongly dependent on the nature of the viscous operator. Although the ZVI is easily obtained with hyperdiffusion, it is difficult to sustain with physical (second order) diffusion operators up to Reynolds numbers as high as 107. This sensitivity is probably due to the ZVI's reliance on critical layers, whose characteristic length-scale, structure, and dynamics are controlled by viscous diffusion. Second, we observe that the ZVI is sensitive to radiative processes, and indeed only operates when the Peclet number is greater than a critical value ˜104, or when the cooling time is longer than ˜10Ω-1. As a consequence, the ZVI struggles to appear at R ≳ 0.3 au in standard 0.01 M⊙ T Tauri disc models, though younger more massive discs provide a more hospitable environment. Together these results question the prevalence of the ZVI in protoplanetary discs.

  14. The formation of discs in clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clark, Paul C.

    2010-11-01

    We review the properties of the discs that form around ‘sink particles’ in smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) simulations of cluster formation, similar to those of Bate et al. (2003) and Bonnell et al. (2004), and compare them to the observed properties of discs in nearby star-forming regions. Contrary to previous suggestions, discs can form and survive in such an environment, despite the chaotic effects of competitive accretion. We find the discs are typically massive, with ratios of disc mass to central object mass of around 0.1, or higher, being typical. Naturally, the evolution of these discs is dominated by gravitational torques, and the more massive examples exhibit strong m=2 spiral modes. We also find that they can continuously grow over a period of 100,000 years, provided the central object is a single sink particle and the local density of sink particles is low. Discs that form around sink particles in the very centres of clusters tend to be shorter lived, but a single star can lose and gain a disc several times during the main accretion phase. However due to the nature of the turbulence in the cluster, the disc orientation can change dramatically over this time period, since disc-sink systems can accrete from counter-rotating envelopes. Since the competitive accretion process brings in material from large distances, the associated angular momentum can be higher than one would expect for an isolated star formation model. As such, we find that the discs are typically several hundred of AUs in extent, with the largest keplerian structures having radii of ~ 2000AU.

  15. Use NASA GES DISC Data in ArcGIS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yang, Wenli; Pham, Long B.; Kempler, Steve

    2015-01-01

    This presentation describes GIS relevant data at NASA Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC), GES DISC Services and Support for GIS Users, and use cases of GES DISC data in ArcGIS.

  16. Immobilized Horseradish Peroxidase on Discs of Polyvinyl Alcohol-Glutaraldehyde Coated with Polyaniline

    PubMed Central

    Caramori, Samantha Salomão; Fernandes, Kátia Flávia; de Carvalho Junior, Luiz Bezerra

    2012-01-01

    Discs of network polyvinyl alcohol-glutaraldehyde (PVAG) were synthesized and coated with polyaniline (PANI) using glutaraldehyde as a chemical arm (PVAG-PANIG-HRP disc). The best conditions for the immobilization were established as about 1.0 mg mL−1 of protein, for 60 min and pH 5.5. The soluble enzyme lost all of its activity after incubation at 70°C for 15 min, whereas the PVAG-PANIG-HRP disc retained about half of the initial activity for pyrogallol. The same PVAG-PANIG-HRP disc was used consecutively three times without any activity lossbut presented 25% of the initial activity after the 7th use. PVAG-PANIG-HRP disc retained approximately 80% and 60% of its initial activity after 60 and 80 days of storage, respectively. Resorcinol, m-cresol, catechol, pyrogallol, α-naphthol, βnaphthol, and 4, 4′-diaminodiphenyl benzidine were efficiently oxidized by the PVAG-PANIG-HRP disc (from about 70% to 90%), and it was less efficient towards aniline, phenol, and 2-nitrosonaphthol. PMID:22619582

  17. Changes in disc herniation after CT-guided Percutaneous Laser Disc Decompression (PLDD): MR findings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brat, Hugues G.; Bouziane, Tarik; Lambert, Jean; Divano, Luisa

    2004-09-01

    The aim of Percutaneous Laser Disc Decompression (PLDD) is to vaporize a small portion of the nucleus pulposus. Clinical efficacy of this technique is largely proven. However, time-evolution of intervertebral disc and its hernia after PLDD is not known. This study analyses changes in disc herniation and its native intervertebral disc at a mean follow-up of 7.5 months after PLDD in asymptomatic patients. Main observations at MRI are appearance of a high signal on T2WI in the hernia in 59%, shrinking of the hernia in 66% and overall stability of disc height.

  18. Determination of the activity concentration levels of the artificial radionuclide137Cs in soil samples collected from Qatar using high-resolution gamma-ray spectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Al-Sulaiti, Huda; Nasir, Tabassum; Al Mugren, K. S.; Alkhomashi, N.; Al-Dahan, N.; Al-Dosari, M.; Bradley, D. A.; Bukhari, S.; Regan, P. H.; Santawamaitre, T.; Malain, D.; Habib, A.; Al-Dosari, Hanan; Daar, Eman

    2016-09-01

    The goal of this study was to establish the first baseline measurements for radioactivity concentration of the artificial radionuclide 137Cs in soil samples collected from the Qatarian peninsula. The work focused on the determination of the activity concentrations levels of man-made radiation in 129 soil samples collected across the landscape of the State of Qatar. All the samples were collected before the most recent accident in Japan, “the 2011 Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant accident”. The activity concentrations have been measured via high-resolution gamma-ray spectrometry using a hyper-pure germanium detector situated in a low-background environment with a copper inner-plated passive lead shield. A radiological map showing the activity concentrations of 137Cs is presented in this work. The concentration wasfound to range from 0.21 to 15.41 Bq/kg. The highest activity concentration of 137Cs was observed in sample no. 26 in North of Qatar. The mean value was found to be around 2.15 ± 0.27 Bq/kg. These values lie within the expected range relative to the countries in the region. It is expected that this contamination is mainly due to the Chernobyl accident on 26 April 1986, but this conclusion cannot be confirmed because of the lack of data before this accident.

  19. 46 CFR 64.61 - Rupture disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 2 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Rupture disc. 64.61 Section 64.61 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) MARINE ENGINEERING MARINE PORTABLE TANKS AND CARGO HANDLING SYSTEMS Pressure Relief Devices and Vacuum Relief Devices for MPTs § 64.61 Rupture disc. If a rupture...

  20. 46 CFR 64.61 - Rupture disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 2 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Rupture disc. 64.61 Section 64.61 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) MARINE ENGINEERING MARINE PORTABLE TANKS AND CARGO HANDLING SYSTEMS Pressure Relief Devices and Vacuum Relief Devices for MPTs § 64.61 Rupture disc. If a rupture...

  1. 46 CFR 64.61 - Rupture disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 2 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Rupture disc. 64.61 Section 64.61 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) MARINE ENGINEERING MARINE PORTABLE TANKS AND CARGO HANDLING SYSTEMS Pressure Relief Devices and Vacuum Relief Devices for MPTs § 64.61 Rupture disc. If a rupture...

  2. 46 CFR 64.61 - Rupture disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 2 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Rupture disc. 64.61 Section 64.61 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) MARINE ENGINEERING MARINE PORTABLE TANKS AND CARGO HANDLING SYSTEMS Pressure Relief Devices and Vacuum Relief Devices for MPTs § 64.61 Rupture disc. If a rupture...

  3. 46 CFR 64.61 - Rupture disc.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 46 Shipping 2 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Rupture disc. 64.61 Section 64.61 Shipping COAST GUARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (CONTINUED) MARINE ENGINEERING MARINE PORTABLE TANKS AND CARGO HANDLING SYSTEMS Pressure Relief Devices and Vacuum Relief Devices for MPTs § 64.61 Rupture disc. If a rupture...

  4. D-Zero Cryostat Supplemental Rupture Disc

    SciTech Connect

    Mulholland, G.T.; /Fermilab

    1987-08-03

    The common relief and rupture disc vent line requires a double disc assembly with vented interspace for accurate disc burst pressures. The first disc must take pump and purge vacuum loading, but be set to operate at 110% of the MAWP, 18.3 psig (ASME code). The available solution is 18.3 psig with a burst tolerance of +/- psig. The interspace should be locally vented by a flow limiting vent valve to decouple the vent line backpressure from the vessel rupture disc. The second disc must take the worst case vent line backpressure, the steady state value found in D-Zero engineering note 3740.000-EN-63 with all three cryostats simultaneously venting at the fire condition into the 4-inch x 6-inch and 6-inch x 8-inch sections. This value is less than 2 psid. The maximum rupture value for the second disc must be less than the minimum rupture value for the first disc less 2 psid i.e. < 16.3.

  5. The inner cavity of the circumnuclear disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blank, M.; Morris, M. R.; Frank, A.; Carroll-Nellenback, J. J.; Duschl, W. J.

    2016-06-01

    The circumnuclear disc (CND) orbiting the Galaxy's central black hole is a reservoir of material that can ultimately provide energy through accretion, or form stars in the presence of the black hole, as evidenced by the stellar cluster that is presently located at the CND's centre. In this paper, we report the results of a computational study of the dynamics of the CND. The results lead us to question two paradigms that are prevalent in previous research on the Galactic Centre. The first is that the disc's inner cavity is maintained by the interaction of the central stellar cluster's strong winds with the disc's inner rim, and secondly, that the presence of unstable clumps in the disc implies that the CND is a transient feature. Our simulations show that, in the absence of a magnetic field, the interaction of the wind with the inner disc rim actually leads to a filling of the inner cavity within a few orbital time-scales, contrary to previous expectations. However, including the effects of magnetic fields stabilizes the inner disc rim against rapid inward migration. Furthermore, this interaction causes instabilities that continuously create clumps that are individually unstable against tidal shearing. Thus the occurrence of such unstable clumps does not necessarily mean that the disc is itself a transient phenomenon. The next steps in this investigation are to explore the effect of the magnetorotational instability on the disc evolution and to test whether the results presented here persist for longer time-scales than those considered here.

  6. Rapid radiative clearing of protoplanetary discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haworth, Thomas J.; Clarke, Cathie J.; Owen, James E.

    2016-04-01

    The lack of observed transition discs with inner gas holes of radii greater than ˜50 au implies that protoplanetary discs dispersed from the inside out must remove gas from the outer regions rapidly. We investigate the role of photoevaporation in the final clearing of gas from low mass discs with inner holes. In particular, we study the so-called `thermal sweeping' mechanism which results in rapid clearing of the disc. Thermal sweeping was originally thought to arise when the radial and vertical pressure scalelengths at the X-ray heated inner edge of the disc match. We demonstrate that this criterion is not fundamental. Rather, thermal sweeping occurs when the pressure maximum at the inner edge of the dust heated disc falls below the maximum possible pressure of X-ray heated gas (which depends on the local X-ray flux). We derive new critical peak volume and surface density estimates for rapid radiative clearing which, in general, result in rapid dispersal happening less readily than in previous estimates. This less efficient clearing of discs by X-ray driven thermal sweeping leaves open the issue of what mechanism (e.g. far-ultraviolet heating) can clear gas from the outer disc sufficiently quickly to explain the non-detection of cold gas around weak line T Tauri stars.

  7. Dependence of optic disc parameters on disc area according to Heidelberg Retina Tomograph: Part II.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machekhin, V.; Manaenkova, G.; Bondarenko, O.

    2007-05-01

    With the help of Heidelberg Retina Tomograph (HRT-II) optic disc parameters in 211 eyes of 115 healthy patients with refraction Em +/- 3,0 D and 96 eyes of 72 patients with myopia 3,5-14,0 D without any signs of glaucoma were studied. Analysis of optic disc parameters were carried out in 5 groups of patients according to disc area: less than 1,5 mm2, 1,5- 2,5 mm2, 2,5-3,0 mm2, 3,0-3,5 mm2 and more than 3,5 mm2. An accurate depending on disc area was revealed for all optic disc parameters in all sectors, which was manifested by increasing cup disc and rim disc (area and volume) and other parameters. We consider it is necessary to use the proper tables for right interpretation of received data for early diagnosis of glaucoma.

  8. Lumbar Epidural Varix Mimicking Disc Herniation.

    PubMed

    Bursalı, Adem; Akyoldas, Goktug; Guvenal, Ahmet Burak; Yaman, Onur

    2016-07-01

    Lumbar radiculopathy is generally caused by such well-recognized entity as lumbar disc herniation in neurosurgical practice; however rare pathologies such as thrombosed epidural varix may mimic them by causing radicular symptoms. In this case report, we present a 26-year-old man with the complaint of back and right leg pain who was operated for right L4-5 disc herniation. The lesion interpreted as an extruded disc herniation preoperatively was found to be a thrombosed epidural varix compressing the nerve root preoperatively. The nerve root was decompressed by shrinking the lesion with bipolar thermocoagulation and excision. The patient's complaints disappeared in the postoperative period. Thrombosed lumbar epidural varices may mimic lumbar disc herniations both radiologically and clinically. Therefore, must be kept in mind in the differential diagnosis of lumbar disc herniations. Microsurgical techniques are mandatory for the treatment of these pathologies and decompression with thermocoagulation and excision is an efficient method. PMID:27446525

  9. About detection of precessing circumpulsar discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grimani, Catia

    2016-08-01

    Detections of circumpulsar discs and planetary systems through electromagnetic observations appear quite rare. In the case of PSR 1931+24 and B0656+14, the hypothesis of a precessing disc penetrating the pulsar light cylinder is found consistent with radio and gamma observations from these stars. Disc self-occultation and precession may affect electromagnetic measurements. We investigate here under which conditions gravitational waves generated by circumpulsar disc precession may be detected by the proposed second-generation space interferometers DECI-hertz Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory and Big Bang Observer. The characteristics of circumpulsar detectable precessing discs are estimated as a function of distance from the Solar system. Speculations on detection rates are presented.

  10. Lumbar Epidural Varix Mimicking Disc Herniation

    PubMed Central

    Bursalı, Adem; Guvenal, Ahmet Burak; Yaman, Onur

    2016-01-01

    Lumbar radiculopathy is generally caused by such well-recognized entity as lumbar disc herniation in neurosurgical practice; however rare pathologies such as thrombosed epidural varix may mimic them by causing radicular symptoms. In this case report, we present a 26-year-old man with the complaint of back and right leg pain who was operated for right L4–5 disc herniation. The lesion interpreted as an extruded disc herniation preoperatively was found to be a thrombosed epidural varix compressing the nerve root preoperatively. The nerve root was decompressed by shrinking the lesion with bipolar thermocoagulation and excision. The patient's complaints disappeared in the postoperative period. Thrombosed lumbar epidural varices may mimic lumbar disc herniations both radiologically and clinically. Therefore, must be kept in mind in the differential diagnosis of lumbar disc herniations. Microsurgical techniques are mandatory for the treatment of these pathologies and decompression with thermocoagulation and excision is an efficient method. PMID:27446525

  11. Strongly magnetized accretion discs require poloidal flux

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvesen, Greg; Armitage, Philip J.; Simon, Jacob B.; Begelman, Mitchell C.

    2016-08-01

    Motivated by indirect observational evidence for strongly magnetized accretion discs around black holes, and the novel theoretical properties of such solutions, we investigate how a strong magnetization state can develop and persist. To this end, we perform local simulations of accretion discs with an initially purely toroidal magnetic field of equipartition strength. We demonstrate that discs with zero net vertical magnetic flux and realistic boundary conditions cannot sustain a strong toroidal field. However, a magnetic pressure-dominated disc can form from an initial configuration with a sufficient amount of net vertical flux and realistic boundary conditions. Our results suggest that poloidal flux is a necessary prerequisite for the sustainability of strongly magnetized accretion discs.

  12. Artificial neural network modelling of the antioxidant activity and phenolic compounds of bananas submitted to different drying treatments.

    PubMed

    Guiné, Raquel P F; Barroca, Maria João; Gonçalves, Fernando J; Alves, Mariana; Oliveira, Solange; Mendes, Mateus

    2015-02-01

    Bananas (cv. Musa nana and Musa cavendishii) fresh and dried by hot air at 50 and 70°C and lyophilisation were analysed for phenolic contents and antioxidant activity. All samples were subject to six extractions (three with methanol followed by three with acetone/water solution). The experimental data served to train a neural network adequate to describe the experimental observations for both output variables studied: total phenols and antioxidant activity. The results show that both bananas are similar and air drying decreased total phenols and antioxidant activity for both temperatures, whereas lyophilisation decreased the phenolic content in a lesser extent. Neural network experiments showed that antioxidant activity and phenolic compounds can be predicted accurately from the input variables: banana variety, dryness state and type and order of extract. Drying state and extract order were found to have larger impact in the values of antioxidant activity and phenolic compounds. PMID:25172734

  13. Artificial neural network modelling of the antioxidant activity and phenolic compounds of bananas submitted to different drying treatments.

    PubMed

    Guiné, Raquel P F; Barroca, Maria João; Gonçalves, Fernando J; Alves, Mariana; Oliveira, Solange; Mendes, Mateus

    2015-02-01

    Bananas (cv. Musa nana and Musa cavendishii) fresh and dried by hot air at 50 and 70°C and lyophilisation were analysed for phenolic contents and antioxidant activity. All samples were subject to six extractions (three with methanol followed by three with acetone/water solution). The experimental data served to train a neural network adequate to describe the experimental observations for both output variables studied: total phenols and antioxidant activity. The results show that both bananas are similar and air drying decreased total phenols and antioxidant activity for both temperatures, whereas lyophilisation decreased the phenolic content in a lesser extent. Neural network experiments showed that antioxidant activity and phenolic compounds can be predicted accurately from the input variables: banana variety, dryness state and type and order of extract. Drying state and extract order were found to have larger impact in the values of antioxidant activity and phenolic compounds.

  14. During Drosophila disc regeneration, JAK/STAT coordinates cell proliferation with Dilp8-mediated developmental delay.

    PubMed

    Katsuyama, Tomonori; Comoglio, Federico; Seimiya, Makiko; Cabuy, Erik; Paro, Renato

    2015-05-01

    Regeneration of fragmented Drosophila imaginal discs occurs in an epimorphic manner involving local cell proliferation at the wound site. After disc fragmentation, cells at the wound site activate a restoration program through wound healing, regenerative cell proliferation, and repatterning of the tissue. However, the interplay of signaling cascades driving these early reprogramming steps is not well-understood. Here, we profiled the transcriptome of regenerating cells in the early phase within 24 h after wounding. We found that JAK/STAT signaling becomes activated at the wound site and promotes regenerative cell proliferation in cooperation with Wingless (Wg) signaling. In addition, we showed that the expression of Drosophila insulin-like peptide 8 (dilp8), which encodes a paracrine peptide to delay the onset of pupariation, is controlled by JAK/STAT signaling in early regenerating discs. Our findings suggest that JAK/STAT signaling plays a pivotal role in coordinating regenerative disc growth with organismal developmental timing.

  15. The chemodynamical evolution of the Milky Way disc - A new modeling approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minchev, Ivan; Chiappini, Cristina; Martig, Marie

    2014-01-01

    Despite the recent advancements in the field of galaxy formation and evolution, fully self-consistent simulations are still unable to make the detailed predictions necessary for the planned and ongoing large spectroscopic and photometric surveys of the Milky Way disc. These difficulties arise from the very uncertain nature of sub-grid physical energy feedback within models, affecting both star formation rates and chemical enrichment. To avoid these problems, we have introduced a new approach which consists of fusing disc chemical evolution models with compatible numerical simulations. We demonstrate the power of this method by showing that a range of observational results can be explained by our new model. We show that due to radial migration from mergers at high redshift and the central bar at later times, a sizable fraction of old metal-poor, high-[α/Fe] stars can reach the solar vicinity. This naturally accounts for a number of recent observations related to both the thin and thick discs, despite the fact that we use thin-disc chemistry only. Within the framework of our model, the MW thick disc has emerged naturally from (i) stars born with high velocity dispersions at high redshift, (ii) stars migrating from the inner disc very early on due to strong merger activity, and (iii) further radial migration driven by the bar and spirals at later times. A significant fraction of old stars with thick-disc characteristics could have been born near the solar radius.

  16. The role of thermodynamics in disc fragmentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stamatellos, Dimitris; Whitworth, Anthony P.

    2009-12-01

    Thermodynamics play an important role in determining the way a protostellar disc fragments to form planets, brown dwarfs and low-mass stars. We explore the effect that different treatments of radiative transfer have in simulations of fragmenting discs. Three prescriptions for the radiative transfer are used: (i) the diffusion approximation of Stamatellos et al.; (ii) the barotropic equation of state (EOS) of Goodwin et al. and (iii) the barotropic EOS of Bate et al. The barotropic approximations capture the general evolution of the density and temperature at the centre of each proto-fragment but (i) they do not make any adjustments for particular circumstances of a proto-fragment forming in the disc and (ii) they do not take into account thermal inertia effects that are important for fast-forming proto-fragments in the outer disc region. As a result, the number of fragments formed in the disc and their properties are different, when a barotropic EOS is used. This is important not only for disc studies but also for simulations of collapsing turbulent clouds, as in many cases in such simulations stars form with discs that subsequently fragment. We also examine the difference in the way proto-fragments condense out in the disc at different distances from the central star using the diffusion approximation and following the collapse of each proto-fragment until the formation of the second core (ρ ~= 10-3gcm-3). We find that proto-fragments forming closer to the central star tend to form earlier and evolve faster from the first to the second core than proto-fragments forming in the outer disc region. The former have a large pool of material in the inner disc region that they can accrete from and grow in mass. The latter accrete more slowly and they are hotter because they generally form in a quick abrupt event.

  17. Removing life support: motivations, obligations. An opinion on NCCB Committee for Pro-Life Activities' statement on artificial hydration and nutrition.

    PubMed

    O'Rourke, K D; deBlois, J

    1992-01-01

    In April 1992 the Committee for Pro-Life Activities of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a resource paper titled "Nutrition and Hydration: Moral and Pastoral Reflections." At best, this document and its conclusions may be viewed as a pastoral statement, offering some tentative reasoning and conclusions to be considered in cases that concern the use of medically assisted nutrition and hydration. When discussing the question, is the withholding or withdrawing of medically assisted hydration and nutrition always direct killing? the document applies two principles--"no reasonable hope of benefit" and "involving excessive burdens." The document's crucial part is its admission that artificial hydration and nutrition may be removed without the intention of causing death, and that "this kind of decision should not be equated with a decision to kill or with suicide." The committee assigns decision-making responsibility to patients, families, and healthcare professionals, but continues its discussion for 20 pages and offers cautions conclusions concerning removal of such therapy. Two assumptions seem to underlie the document's overly cautious conclusions, the first being that mere vegetative function mandates continued life support. The first assumption overemphasizes the value of physiological functioning insofar as the purpose of human life is concerned. It also is contrary to the goal of medicine, which envisions restoration of cognitive-affective function as an element of successful therapy. The second assumption is that withdrawal of artificial hydration and nutrition from persons in PVS may lead to euthanasia. But mandating the continuation of nonbeneficial therapy simply because it prolongs physiological function seems to lead people to favor euthanasia rather than reject it.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  18. Electrical responses of artificial DNA nanostructures on solution-processed In-Ga-Zn-O thin-film transistors with multistacked active layers.

    PubMed

    Jung, Joohye; Kim, Si Joon; Yoon, Doo Hyun; Kim, Byeonghoon; Park, Sung Ha; Kim, Hyun Jae

    2013-01-01

    We propose solution-processed In-Ga-Zn-O (IGZO) thin-film transistors (TFTs) with multistacked active layers for detecting artificial deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). Enhanced sensing ability and stable electrical performance of TFTs were achieved through use of multistacked active layers. Our IGZO TFT had a turn-on voltage (V(on)) of -0.8 V and a subthreshold swing (SS) value of 0.48 V/decade. A dry-wet method was adopted to immobilize double-crossover DNA on the IGZO surface, after which an anomalous hump effect accompanying a significant decrease in V(on) (-13.6 V) and degradation of SS (1.29 V/decade) was observed. This sensing behavior was attributed to the middle interfaces of the multistacked active layers and the negatively charged phosphate groups on the DNA backbone, which generated a parasitic path in the TFT device. These results compared favorably with those reported for conventional field-effect transistor-based DNA sensors with remarkable sensitivity and stability. PMID:23211212

  19. Influence of unilateral disc displacement on the stress response of the temporomandibular joint discs during opening and mastication

    PubMed Central

    Pérez del Palomar, A; Doblaré, M

    2007-01-01

    The temporomandibular joint plays a crucial role in human mastication acting as a guide of jaw movements. During these movements, the joint is subjected to loads which cause stresses and deformations in its cartilaginous structures. A perfect balance between the two sides of the joint is essential to maintain the physiological stress level within the tissues. Therefore, it has been suggested that a derangement of the joint is a contributing factor in the development of mandibular asymmetry, especially if problems of the temporomandibular joint start in childhood or adolescence. To analyze the movement of the mandible and the stresses undergone by the discs, two finite element models of the human temporomandibular joint including the masticatory system were developed, one corresponding to a healthy joint and the other with a unilateral anterior disc displacement with their movement controlled by muscle activation. A fibre-reinforced porohyperelastic model was used to simulate the behaviour of the articular discs. The stress distribution was analyzed in both models during free opening and closing, and during the introduction of a resistant force between incisors or molars. It was found that a slight unilateral anterior disc displacement does not lead to mandibular asymmetry but to a slight decrease of the maximum gape. With the introduction of a restriction between incisors, the maximum stresses moved to the anterior band in contrast to what happened if the restriction was imposed between molars where maximum stresses were located more posteriorly. Finally, the presence of a unilateral displacement of the disc involved a strong change in the overall behaviour of the joint including also the healthy side, where the maximum stresses moved to the posterior part. PMID:17725577

  20. Biomechanical Analysis of a Novel Prosthesis Based on the Physiological Curvature of Endplate for Cervical Disc Replacement

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Cheng-Cheng; Hao, Ding-Jun; Huang, Da-Geng; Qian, Li-Xiong; Feng, Hang; Li, Hou-Kun; Zhao, Song-Chuan

    2016-01-01

    Study Design Biomechanical analysis of a novel prosthesis based on the physiological curvature of endplate was performed. Objective To compare the biomechanical differences between a novel prosthesis based on the physiological curvature of the endplate and the Prestige LP prosthesis after cervical disc replacement (CDR). Summary of Background Data Artificial disc prostheses have been widely used to preserve the physiological function of treated and adjacent motion segments in CDR, while most of those present a flat surface instead of an arcuate surface which approximately similar to anatomic structures in vivo. We first reported a well-designed artificial disc prosthesis based on the physiological curvature of the endplate. Methods Three motion segments of 24 ovine cervical spines (C2-5) were evaluated in a robotic spine system with axial compressive loads of 50N. Testing conditions were as follows: 1) intact, 2) C3–4 CDR with artificial disc prosthesis based on the physiological curvature of the endplate, and 3) C3–4 CDR with the Prestige LP prosthesis. The range of motion (ROM) and the pressures on the inferior surface of the two prostheses were recorded and analyzed. Results As compared to the intact state, the ROM of all three segments had no significant difference in the replacement group. Additionally, there was no significant difference in ROM between the two prostheses. The mean pressure on the novel prosthesis was significantly less than the Prestige LP prosthesis. Conclusion ROM in 3 groups (intact group, CDR group with novel prosthesis and CDR group with Prestige LP) showed no significant difference. The mean pressure on the inferior surface of the novel prosthesis was significantly lower than the Prestige LP prosthesis. Therefore, the novel artificial disc prosthesis is feasible and effective, and can reduce the implant-bone interface pressure on the endplate, which may be one possible reason of prosthesis subsidence. PMID:27355319

  1. In vivo Loads in the Lumbar L3-4 Disc during a Weight Lifting Extension

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shaobai; Park, Won Man; Kim, Yoon Hyuk; Cha, Thomas; Wood, Kirkham; Li, Guoan

    2014-01-01

    Background Knowledge of in vivo human lumbar loading is critical for understanding the lumbar function and for improving surgical treatments of lumbar pathology. Although numerous experimental measurements and computational simulations have been reported, non-invasive determination of in vivo spinal disc loads is still a challenge in biomedical engineering. The object of the study is to investigate the in vivo human lumbar disc loads using a subject-specific and kinematic driven finite element approach. Methods Three dimensional (3D) lumbar spine models of three living subjects were created using MR images. A 3D finite element model of the L3-4 disc, including the annulus fibrosus and nucleus pulposus, was built for each subject. The endplate kinematics of the L3-4 segment of each subject during a dynamic weight lifting extension was determined using a dual fluoroscopic imaging technique. The endplate kinematics was used as displacement boundary conditions of the subject specific finite element model of the L3-4 disc to calculate the in-vivo disc forces and moments during the weight lifting activity. Findings During the weight lifting extension, the L3-4 disc experienced maximum shear load of about 230 N or 0.34 bodyweight at the flexion position and maximum compressive load of 1500 N or 2.28 bodyweight at the upright position. The disc experienced a primary flexion-extension moment during the motion which reached a maximum of 4.2 Nm at upright position with stretched arms holding the weight. Interpretation This study provided quantitative data on in vivo disc loading that could help understand intrinsic biomechanics of the spine and improve surgical treatment of pathological discs using fusion or arthroplasty techniques. PMID:24345591

  2. Spontaneous Regression of Herniated Lumbar Disc with New Disc Protrusion in the Adjacent Level

    PubMed Central

    Gürcan, Serkan

    2016-01-01

    Spontaneous regression of herniated lumbar discs was reported occasionally. The mechanisms proposed for regression of disc herniation are still incomplete. This paper describes and discusses a case of spontaneous regression of herniated lumbar discs with a new disc protrusion in the adjacent level. A 41-year-old man was admitted with radiating pain and numbness in the left lower extremity with a left posterolateral disc extrusion at L5-S1 level. He was admitted to hospital with low back pain due to disc herniation caudally immigrating at L4-5 level three years ago. He refused the surgical intervention that was offered and was treated conservatively at that time. He had no neurological deficit and a history of spontaneous regression of the extruded lumbar disc; so, a conservative therapy, including bed rest, physical therapy, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and analgesics, was advised. In conclusion, herniated lumbar disc fragments may regress spontaneously. Reports are prone to advise conservative treatment for extruded or sequestrated lumbar disc herniations. However, these patients should be followed up closely; new herniation at adjacent/different level may occur. Furthermore, it is important to know which herniated disk should be removed and which should be treated conservatively, because disc herniation may cause serious complications as muscle weakness and cauda equine syndrome. PMID:27429818

  3. Spontaneous Regression of Herniated Lumbar Disc with New Disc Protrusion in the Adjacent Level.

    PubMed

    Hakan, Tayfun; Gürcan, Serkan

    2016-01-01

    Spontaneous regression of herniated lumbar discs was reported occasionally. The mechanisms proposed for regression of disc herniation are still incomplete. This paper describes and discusses a case of spontaneous regression of herniated lumbar discs with a new disc protrusion in the adjacent level. A 41-year-old man was admitted with radiating pain and numbness in the left lower extremity with a left posterolateral disc extrusion at L5-S1 level. He was admitted to hospital with low back pain due to disc herniation caudally immigrating at L4-5 level three years ago. He refused the surgical intervention that was offered and was treated conservatively at that time. He had no neurological deficit and a history of spontaneous regression of the extruded lumbar disc; so, a conservative therapy, including bed rest, physical therapy, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and analgesics, was advised. In conclusion, herniated lumbar disc fragments may regress spontaneously. Reports are prone to advise conservative treatment for extruded or sequestrated lumbar disc herniations. However, these patients should be followed up closely; new herniation at adjacent/different level may occur. Furthermore, it is important to know which herniated disk should be removed and which should be treated conservatively, because disc herniation may cause serious complications as muscle weakness and cauda equine syndrome. PMID:27429818

  4. Disc nucleus fortification for lumbar degenerative disc disease: a biomechanical study.

    PubMed

    Dupré, Derrick A; Cook, Daniel J; Brad Bellotte, J; Oh, Michael Y; Whiting, Donald; Cheng, Boyle C

    2016-05-01

    OBJECTIVE Spinal stability is attributed in part to osteoligamentous structures, including the vertebral body, facets, intervertebral discs, and posterior elements. The materials in this study provide an opportunity to augment the degenerated nucleus without removing native disc material, a procedure introduced here as "fortification." The objective of this study was to determine the effect of nucleus fortification on lumbar disc biomechanics. METHODS The authors performed in vitro analysis of human cadaveric functional spinal units (FSUs), along with characterization and quantification of movement of the units using biomechanical data in intact, disc-only, and fortified specimens. The units underwent removal of all posterior elements and annulus and were fortified by injecting a biogel into the nucleus pulposus. Each specimen was subjected to load testing, range of motion (ROM) quantification, and disc bulge measurements. Optoelectric tracking was used to quantify disc bulge. These criteria were assessed in the intact, disc-only, and fortified treatments. RESULTS Disc-only FSUs resulted in increased ROM when compared with intact and fortified conditions. Fortification of the FSU resulted in partial restoration of normal ROM in the treatment groups. Analysis of hysteresis loops showed more linear response in the fortified groups when compared with the intact and disc-only groups. CONCLUSIONS Disc nucleus fortification increases linearity and decreases ROM.

  5. Disc nucleus fortification for lumbar degenerative disc disease: a biomechanical study.

    PubMed

    Dupré, Derrick A; Cook, Daniel J; Brad Bellotte, J; Oh, Michael Y; Whiting, Donald; Cheng, Boyle C

    2016-05-01

    OBJECTIVE Spinal stability is attributed in part to osteoligamentous structures, including the vertebral body, facets, intervertebral discs, and posterior elements. The materials in this study provide an opportunity to augment the degenerated nucleus without removing native disc material, a procedure introduced here as "fortification." The objective of this study was to determine the effect of nucleus fortification on lumbar disc biomechanics. METHODS The authors performed in vitro analysis of human cadaveric functional spinal units (FSUs), along with characterization and quantification of movement of the units using biomechanical data in intact, disc-only, and fortified specimens. The units underwent removal of all posterior elements and annulus and were fortified by injecting a biogel into the nucleus pulposus. Each specimen was subjected to load testing, range of motion (ROM) quantification, and disc bulge measurements. Optoelectric tracking was used to quantify disc bulge. These criteria were assessed in the intact, disc-only, and fortified treatments. RESULTS Disc-only FSUs resulted in increased ROM when compared with intact and fortified conditions. Fortification of the FSU resulted in partial restoration of normal ROM in the treatment groups. Analysis of hysteresis loops showed more linear response in the fortified groups when compared with the intact and disc-only groups. CONCLUSIONS Disc nucleus fortification increases linearity and decreases ROM. PMID:26771371

  6. Stem cells sources for intervertebral disc regeneration.

    PubMed

    Vadalà, Gianluca; Russo, Fabrizio; Ambrosio, Luca; Loppini, Mattia; Denaro, Vincenzo

    2016-05-26

    Intervertebral disc regeneration field is rapidly growing since disc disorders represent a major health problem in industrialized countries with very few possible treatments. Indeed, current available therapies are symptomatic, and surgical procedures consist in disc removal and spinal fusion, which is not immune to regardable concerns about possible comorbidities, cost-effectiveness, secondary risks and long-lasting outcomes. This review paper aims to share recent advances in stem cell therapy for the treatment of intervertebral disc degeneration. In literature the potential use of different adult stem cells for intervertebral disc regeneration has already been reported. Bone marrow mesenchymal stromal/stem cells, adipose tissue derived stem cells, synovial stem cells, muscle-derived stem cells, olfactory neural stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells, hematopoietic stem cells, disc stem cells, and embryonic stem cells have been studied for this purpose either in vitro or in vivo. Moreover, several engineered carriers (e.g., hydrogels), characterized by full biocompatibility and prompt biodegradation, have been designed and combined with different stem cell types in order to optimize the local and controlled delivery of cellular substrates in situ. The paper overviews the literature discussing the current status of our knowledge of the different stem cells types used as a cell-based therapy for disc regeneration.

  7. Stress in Lumbar Intervertebral Discs during Distraction

    PubMed Central

    Gay, Ralph E.; Ilharreborde, Brice; Zhao, Kristin D.; Berglund, Lawrence J.; Bronfort, Gert; An, Kai-Nan

    2008-01-01

    BACKGROUND CONTEXT The intervertebral disc is a common source of low back pain. Prospective studies suggest that treatments that intermittently distract the disc might be beneficial for chronic low back pain. Although the potential exists for distraction therapies to affect the disc biomechanically their effect on intradiscal stress is debated. PURPOSE To determine if distraction alone, distraction combined with flexion or distraction combined with extension can reduce nucleus pulposus pressure and posterior anulus compressive stress in cadaveric lumbar discs compared to simulated standing or lying. STUDY DESIGN Laboratory study using single cadaveric motion segments. OUTCOME MEASURES Strain gauge measures of nucleus pulposus pressure and compressive stress in the anterior and posterior annulus fibrosus METHODS Intradiscal stress profilometry was performed on 15 motion segments during 5 simulated conditions: standing, lying, and 3 distracted conditions. Disc degeneration was graded by inspection from 1 (normal) to 4 (severe degeneration). RESULTS All distraction conditions markedly reduced nucleus pressure compared to either simulated standing or lying. There was no difference between distraction with flexion and distraction with extension in regard to posterior annulus compressive stress. Discs with little or no degeneration appeared to distributed compressive stress differently than those with moderate or severe degeneration. CONCLUSIONS Distraction appears to predictably reduce nucleus pulposus pressure. The effect of distraction therapy on the distribution of compressive stress may be dependent in part on the health of the disc. PMID:17981092

  8. Stem cells sources for intervertebral disc regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Vadalà, Gianluca; Russo, Fabrizio; Ambrosio, Luca; Loppini, Mattia; Denaro, Vincenzo

    2016-01-01

    Intervertebral disc regeneration field is rapidly growing since disc disorders represent a major health problem in industrialized countries with very few possible treatments. Indeed, current available therapies are symptomatic, and surgical procedures consist in disc removal and spinal fusion, which is not immune to regardable concerns about possible comorbidities, cost-effectiveness, secondary risks and long-lasting outcomes. This review paper aims to share recent advances in stem cell therapy for the treatment of intervertebral disc degeneration. In literature the potential use of different adult stem cells for intervertebral disc regeneration has already been reported. Bone marrow mesenchymal stromal/stem cells, adipose tissue derived stem cells, synovial stem cells, muscle-derived stem cells, olfactory neural stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells, hematopoietic stem cells, disc stem cells, and embryonic stem cells have been studied for this purpose either in vitro or in vivo. Moreover, several engineered carriers (e.g., hydrogels), characterized by full biocompatibility and prompt biodegradation, have been designed and combined with different stem cell types in order to optimize the local and controlled delivery of cellular substrates in situ. The paper overviews the literature discussing the current status of our knowledge of the different stem cells types used as a cell-based therapy for disc regeneration. PMID:27247704

  9. Stem cells sources for intervertebral disc regeneration.

    PubMed

    Vadalà, Gianluca; Russo, Fabrizio; Ambrosio, Luca; Loppini, Mattia; Denaro, Vincenzo

    2016-05-26

    Intervertebral disc regeneration field is rapidly growing since disc disorders represent a major health problem in industrialized countries with very few possible treatments. Indeed, current available therapies are symptomatic, and surgical procedures consist in disc removal and spinal fusion, which is not immune to regardable concerns about possible comorbidities, cost-effectiveness, secondary risks and long-lasting outcomes. This review paper aims to share recent advances in stem cell therapy for the treatment of intervertebral disc degeneration. In literature the potential use of different adult stem cells for intervertebral disc regeneration has already been reported. Bone marrow mesenchymal stromal/stem cells, adipose tissue derived stem cells, synovial stem cells, muscle-derived stem cells, olfactory neural stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells, hematopoietic stem cells, disc stem cells, and embryonic stem cells have been studied for this purpose either in vitro or in vivo. Moreover, several engineered carriers (e.g., hydrogels), characterized by full biocompatibility and prompt biodegradation, have been designed and combined with different stem cell types in order to optimize the local and controlled delivery of cellular substrates in situ. The paper overviews the literature discussing the current status of our knowledge of the different stem cells types used as a cell-based therapy for disc regeneration. PMID:27247704

  10. The European artificial organ scene: present status.

    PubMed

    Vanholder, Raymond; del Cañizo, Juan F; Sauer, Igor M; Stegmayr, Bernd

    2005-06-01

    This article summarizes the current evolutions regarding artificial organs in Europe. The review emanates from the activities by four of the work groups of the European Society for Artificial Organs (ESAO) and is essentially based on the reports by these work groups at the latest ESAO meeting in Warsaw, Poland (2004). The topics are: apheresis, heart support, liver support, uremic toxins.

  11. Chemical separation of disc components using RAVE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wojno, Jennifer; Kordopatis, Georges; Steinmetz, Matthias; McMillan, Paul; Matijevič, Gal; Binney, James; Wyse, Rosemary F. G.; Boeche, Corrado; Just, Andreas; Grebel, Eva K.; Siebert, Arnaud; Bienaymé, Olivier; Gibson, Brad K.; Zwitter, Tomaž; Bland-Hawthorn, Joss; Navarro, Julio F.; Parker, Quentin A.; Reid, Warren; Seabroke, George; Watson, Fred

    2016-10-01

    We present evidence from the RAdial Velocity Experiment (RAVE) survey of chemically separated, kinematically distinct disc components in the solar neighbourhood. We apply probabilistic chemical selection criteria to separate our sample into α-low (`thin disc') and α-high (`thick disc') sequences. Using newly derived distances, which will be utilized in the upcoming RAVE DR5, we explore the kinematic trends as a function of metallicity for each of the disc components. For our α-low disc, we find a negative trend in the mean rotational velocity (Vφ) as a function of iron abundance ([Fe/H]). We measure a positive gradient ∂Vφ/∂[Fe/H] for the α-high disc, consistent with results from high-resolution surveys. We also find differences between the α-low and α-high discs in all three components of velocity dispersion. We discuss the implications of an α-low, metal-rich population originating from the inner Galaxy, where the orbits of these stars have been significantly altered by radial mixing mechanisms in order to bring them into the solar neighbourhood. The probabilistic separation we propose can be extended to other data sets for which the accuracy in [α/Fe] is not sufficient to disentangle the chemical disc components a priori. For such data sets which will also have significant overlap with Gaia DR1, we can therefore make full use of the improved parallax and proper motion data as it becomes available to investigate kinematic trends in these chemical disc components.

  12. Modified high-density lipoproteins by artificial sweetener, aspartame, and saccharin, showed loss of anti-atherosclerotic activity and toxicity in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jae-Yong; Park, Ki-Hoon; Kim, Jihoe; Choi, Inho; Cho, Kyung-Hyun

    2015-01-01

    Safety concerns have been raised regarding the association of chronic consumption of artificial sweeteners (ASs) with metabolic disorders, especially in the heart and brain. There has been no information on the in vivo physiological effects of AS consumption in lipoprotein metabolism. High-dosage treatment (final 25, 50, and 100 mM) with AS (aspartame, acesulfame K, and saccharin) to human high-density lipoprotein (HDL) induced loss of antioxidant ability along with elevated atherogenic effects. Aspartame-treated HDL3 (final 100 mM) almost all disappeared due to putative proteolytic degradation. Aspartame- and saccharin-treated HDL3 showed more enhanced cholesteryl ester transfer activity, while their antioxidant ability was disappeared. Microinjection of the modified HDL3 exacerbated the inflammatory death in zebrafish embryos in the presence of oxLDL. These results show that AS treatment impaired the beneficial functions of HDL, resulting in loss of antioxidant and anti-atherogenic activities. These results suggest that aspartame and saccharin could be toxic to the human circulation system as well as embryonic development via impairment of lipoprotein function. PMID:25142179

  13. Modified high-density lipoproteins by artificial sweetener, aspartame, and saccharin, showed loss of anti-atherosclerotic activity and toxicity in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jae-Yong; Park, Ki-Hoon; Kim, Jihoe; Choi, Inho; Cho, Kyung-Hyun

    2015-01-01

    Safety concerns have been raised regarding the association of chronic consumption of artificial sweeteners (ASs) with metabolic disorders, especially in the heart and brain. There has been no information on the in vivo physiological effects of AS consumption in lipoprotein metabolism. High-dosage treatment (final 25, 50, and 100 mM) with AS (aspartame, acesulfame K, and saccharin) to human high-density lipoprotein (HDL) induced loss of antioxidant ability along with elevated atherogenic effects. Aspartame-treated HDL3 (final 100 mM) almost all disappeared due to putative proteolytic degradation. Aspartame- and saccharin-treated HDL3 showed more enhanced cholesteryl ester transfer activity, while their antioxidant ability was disappeared. Microinjection of the modified HDL3 exacerbated the inflammatory death in zebrafish embryos in the presence of oxLDL. These results show that AS treatment impaired the beneficial functions of HDL, resulting in loss of antioxidant and anti-atherogenic activities. These results suggest that aspartame and saccharin could be toxic to the human circulation system as well as embryonic development via impairment of lipoprotein function.

  14. Isolation of oxygenase genes for indigo-forming activity from an artificially polluted soil metagenome by functional screening using Pseudomonas putida strains as hosts.

    PubMed

    Nagayama, Hirofumi; Sugawara, Tomonori; Endo, Ryo; Ono, Akira; Kato, Hiromi; Ohtsubo, Yoshiyuki; Nagata, Yuji; Tsuda, Masataka

    2015-05-01

    Metagenomes contain the DNA from many microorganisms, both culturable and non-culturable, and are a potential resource of novel genes. In this study, a 5.2-Gb metagenomic DNA library was constructed from a soil sample (artificially polluted with four aromatic compounds, i.e., biphenyl, phenanthrene, carbazole, and 3-chlorobenzoate) in Escherichia coli by using a broad-host-range cosmid vector. The resultant library was introduced into naphthalene-degrading Pseudomonas putida-derived strains having deficiencies in their naphthalene dioxygenase components, and indigo-forming clones on the indole-containing agar plates were screened. Cosmids isolated from 29 positive clones were classified by their various properties (original screening hosts, hosts showing indigo-forming activity, and digestion patterns with restriction enzymes), and six representative cosmids were chosen. Sequencing and in vitro transposon mutagenesis of the six cosmids resulted in the identification of genes encoding putative class B and D flavoprotein monooxygenases, a multicomponent hydroxylase, and a reductase that were responsible for the indigo-forming activity in the host cells. Among them, the genes encoding the multicomponent hydroxylase were demonstrated to be involved in phenol degradation. Furthermore, two genes encoding ring-cleavage dioxygenases were also found adjacent to the genes responsible for the indigo formation, and their functions were experimentally confirmed.

  15. Self-assembled monolayers of Aβ peptides on Au electrodes: an artificial platform for probing the reactivity of redox active metals and cofactors relevant to Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Pramanik, Debajyoti; Sengupta, Kushal; Mukherjee, Soumya; Dey, Somdatta Ghosh; Dey, Abhishek

    2012-07-25

    The water-soluble hydrophilic part of human Aβ peptide has been extended to include a C-terminal cysteine residue. Utilizing the thiol functionality of this cysteine residue, self-assembled monolayers (SAM) of these peptides are formed on Au electrodes. Atomic force microscopy imaging confirms formation of small Aβ aggregates on the surface of the electrode. These aggregates bind redox active metals like Cu and cofactors like heme, both of which are proposed to generate toxic partially reduced oxygen species (PROS) and play a vital role in Alzheimer's disease. The spectroscopic and electrochemical properties of these Cu and heme bound Aβ SAM are similar to those reported for the soluble Cu and heme bound Aβ peptide. Experiments performed on these Aβ-SAM electrodes clearly demonstrate that (1) heme bound Aβ is kinetically more competent in reducing O(2) than Cu bound Aβ, (2) under physiological conditions the reduced Cu site produces twice as much PROS (measured in situ) than the reduced heme site, and (3) chelators like clioquinol remove Cu from these aggregates, while drugs like methylene blue inhibit O(2) reactivity of the heme cofactor. This artificial construct provides a very easy platform for investigating potential drugs affecting aggregation of human Aβ peptides and PROS generation by its complexes with redox active metals and cofactors.

  16. Trends in Artificial Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hayes, Patrick

    1978-01-01

    Discusses the foundations of artificial intelligence as a science and the types of answers that may be given to the question, "What is intelligence?" The paradigms of artificial intelligence and general systems theory are compared. (Author/VT)

  17. Spectroscopic Parameters of Lumbar Intervertebral Disc Material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terbetas, G.; Kozlovskaja, A.; Varanius, D.; Graziene, V.; Vaitkus, J.; Vaitkuviene, A.

    2009-06-01

    There are numerous methods of investigating intervertebral disc. Visualization methods are widely used in clinical practice. Histological, imunohistochemical and biochemical methods are more used in scientific research. We propose that a new spectroscopic investigation would be useful in determining intervertebral disc material, especially when no histological specimens are available. Purpose: to determine spectroscopic parameters of intervertebral disc material; to determine emission spectra common for all intervertebral discs; to create a background for further spectroscopic investigation where no histological specimen will be available. Material and Methods: 20 patients, 68 frozen sections of 20 μm thickness from operatively removed intervertebral disc hernia were excited by Nd:YAG microlaser STA-01-TH third harmonic 355 nm light throw 0, 1 mm fiber. Spectrophotometer OceanOptics USB2000 was used for spectra collection. Mathematical analysis of spectra was performed by ORIGIN multiple Gaussian peaks analysis. Results: In each specimen of disc hernia were found distinct maximal spectral peaks of 4 types supporting the histological evaluation of mixture content of the hernia. Fluorescence in the spectral regions 370-700 nm was detected in the disc hernias. The main spectral component was at 494 nm and the contribution of the components with the peak wavelength values at 388 nm, 412 nm and 435±5 nm were varying in the different groups of samples. In comparison to average spectrum of all cases, there are 4 groups of different spectral signatures in the region 400-500 nm in the patient groups, supporting a clinical data on different clinical features of the patients. Discussion and Conclusion: besides the classical open discectomy, new minimally invasive techniques of treating intervertebral disc emerge (PLDD). Intervertebral disc in these techniques is assessed by needle, no histological specimen is taken. Spectroscopic investigation via fiber optics through the

  18. A lumbar disc surgery predictive score card.

    PubMed

    Finneson, B E

    1978-06-01

    A lumbar disc surgery predictive score card or questionnaire has been developed to assess potential candidates for excision of a herniated lumbar disc who have not previously undergone lumbar spine surgery. It is not designed to encompass patients who are being considered for other types of lumbar spine surgery, such as decompressive laminectomy or fusion. In an effort to make the "score card" usable by almost all physicians who are involved in lumbar disc surgery, only studies which have broad acceptance and are generally employed are included. Studies which have less widespread use such as electromyogram, discogram, venogram, special psychologic studies (MMPI, pain drawings) have been purposely excluded.

  19. DISC1 genetics, biology and psychiatric illness

    PubMed Central

    THOMSON, Pippa A.; MALAVASI, Elise L.V.; GRÜNEWALD, Ellen; SOARES, Dinesh C.; BORKOWSKA, Malgorzata; MILLAR, J. Kirsty

    2012-01-01

    Psychiatric disorders are highly heritable, and in many individuals likely arise from the combined effects of genes and the environment. A substantial body of evidence points towards DISC1 being one of the genes that influence risk of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression, and functional studies of DISC1 consequently have the potential to reveal much about the pathways that lead to major mental illness. Here, we review the evidence that DISC1 influences disease risk through effects upon multiple critical pathways in the developing and adult brain. PMID:23550053

  20. Strategies for regeneration of the intervertebral disc.

    PubMed

    Kalson, N S; Richardson, S; Hoyland, J A

    2008-09-01

    Low back pain resulting from degenerative disc disease is the most common cause of disability in the UK. Current low back pain treatments are aimed at either treating the symptoms of pain, or removing the source of pain itself, but do not address the biological basis of the disease. Our increasing understanding of the molecular biological basis for degenerative disc disease has enabled the development of strategies aimed at tackling the causes of degeneration. Here we review the progress that has been made in strategies using cells, biomaterials and growth factors aimed at regenerating the human intervertebral disc.

  1. [Lumbar disc herniation and andrological diseases].

    PubMed

    Jin, Bao-fang

    2015-10-01

    Lumbar disc herniation is a common male disease. In the past, More academic attention was directed to its relationship with lumbago and leg pain than to its association with andrological diseases. Studies show that central lumber intervertebral disc herniation may cause cauda equina injury and result in premature ejaculation, erectile dysfunction, chronic pelvic pain syndrome, priapism, and emission. This article presents an overview on the correlation between central lumbar intervertebral disc herniation and andrological diseases, focusing on the aspects of etiology, pathology, and clinical progress, hoping to invite more attention from andrological and osteological clinicians. PMID:26665671

  2. Artificial Video for Video Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gallis, Michael R.

    2010-01-01

    This paper discusses the use of video analysis software and computer-generated animations for student activities. The use of artificial video affords the opportunity for students to study phenomena for which a real video may not be easy or even possible to procure, using analysis software with which the students are already familiar. We will…

  3. Quasar discs. II - A composite model for the broad-line region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Netzer, Hagai

    1987-03-01

    The possibility of geometrically thin accretion discs in active galactic nuclei (AGNs) was discussed in Paper I of this series (H. Netzer, 1985). The apparent luminosity of such discs depends on the viewing angle and this may be the reason for the observed correlation of continuum brightness and line equivalent width. This idea is taken one step further in the present work and the emission line spectrum of a gas exposed to the anisotropic ionizing radiation of a disc is investigated. One example which is studied in detail is that of a disc UV continuum combined with an isotropic X-ray source. Analysis of the L-M relationship in AGNs, within the framework of the new model, shows that these objects have smaller central masses and higher accretion efficiencies compared with previous estimates. There are important consequences for the two-phase model and cloud formation, and specific predictions of the observed LUV/LX, which is angle dependent.

  4. Artificial life and Piaget.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Ulrich; Grobman, K H.

    2003-04-01

    Artificial life provides important theoretical and methodological tools for the investigation of Piaget's developmental theory. This new method uses artificial neural networks to simulate living phenomena in a computer. A recent study by Parisi and Schlesinger suggests that artificial life might reinvigorate the Piagetian framework. We contrast artificial life with traditional cognitivist approaches, discuss the role of innateness in development, and examine the relation between physiological and psychological explanations of intelligent behaviour.

  5. The effects of high-frequency oscillations in hippocampal electrical activities on the classification of epileptiform events using artificial neural networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiu, Alan W. L.; Jahromi, Shokrollah S.; Khosravani, Houman; Carlen, Peter L.; Bardakjian, Berj L.

    2006-03-01

    The existence of hippocampal high-frequency electrical activities (greater than 100 Hz) during the progression of seizure episodes in both human and animal experimental models of epilepsy has been well documented (Bragin A, Engel J, Wilson C L, Fried I and Buzsáki G 1999 Hippocampus 9 137-42 Khosravani H, Pinnegar C R, Mitchell J R, Bardakjian B L, Federico P and Carlen P L 2005 Epilepsia 46 1-10). However, this information has not been studied between successive seizure episodes or utilized in the application of seizure classification. In this study, we examine the dynamical changes of an in vitro low Mg2+ rat hippocampal slice model of epilepsy at different frequency bands using wavelet transforms and artificial neural networks. By dividing the time-frequency spectrum of each seizure-like event (SLE) into frequency bins, we can analyze their burst-to-burst variations within individual SLEs as well as between successive SLE episodes. Wavelet energy and wavelet entropy are estimated for intracellular and extracellular electrical recordings using sufficiently high sampling rates (10 kHz). We demonstrate that the activities of high-frequency oscillations in the 100-400 Hz range increase as the slice approaches SLE onsets and in later episodes of SLEs. Utilizing the time-dependent relationship between different frequency bands, we can achieve frequency-dependent state classification. We demonstrate that activities in the frequency range 100-400 Hz are critical for the accurate classification of the different states of electrographic seizure-like episodes (containing interictal, preictal and ictal states) in brain slices undergoing recurrent spontaneous SLEs. While preictal activities can be classified with an average accuracy of 77.4 ± 6.7% utilizing the frequency spectrum in the range 0-400 Hz, we can also achieve a similar level of accuracy by using a nonlinear relationship between 100-400 Hz and <4 Hz frequency bands only.

  6. Magnetorotationally driven wind cycles in local disc models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riols, A.; Ogilvie, G. I.; Latter, H.; Ross, J. P.

    2016-09-01

    Jets, from the protostellar to the AGN context, have been extensively studied but their connection to the turbulent dynamics of the underlying accretion disc is poorly understood. Following a similar approach to Lesur et al. (2013), we examine the role of the magnetorotational instability (MRI) in the production and acceleration of outflows from discs. Via a suite of one-dimensional shearing-box simulations of stratified discs we show that magneto-centrifugal winds exhibit cyclic activity with a period of 10 - 20 Ω-1, a few times the orbital period. The cycle seems to be more vigorous for strong vertical field; it is robust to the variation of relevant parameters and independent of numerical details. The convergence of these solutions (in particular the mass loss rate) with vertical box size is also studied. By considering a sequence of magnetohydrostatic equilibria and their stability, the periodic activity may be understood as the succession of the following phases: (a) a dominant MRI channel mode, (b) strong magnetic field generation, (c) consequent wind launching, and ultimately (d) vertical expulsion of the excess magnetic field by the expanding and accelerating gas associated with the wind. We discuss potential connections between this behaviour and observed time-variability in disk-jet systems.

  7. 21 CFR 872.3970 - Interarticular disc prosthesis (interpositional implant).

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Interarticular disc prosthesis (interpositional... disc prosthesis (interpositional implant). (a) Identification. An interarticular disc prosthesis... Food and Drug Administration on or before March 30, 1999, for any interarticular disc...

  8. The first velocity space image of a planetary debris disc orbiting a white dwarf

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manser, Christopher James

    2015-12-01

    Since the first ESS meeting, dusty debris discs at white dwarfs have been firmly established as signposts of evolved planetary systems. We have identified a small number of systems where the circumstellar dust is accompanied by gas. The emission lines from these gaseous components are tracers of dynamic activity in these remnant planetary environments, and provide unparalleled insight into the formation and evolution of the debris discs, and into the properties of the parent planetesimals.Here we present the twelve years of spectroscopy of the prototypical gas disc at SDSS J1228+1040, revealing a spectacular long-term evolution in the morphology of the emission line profiles. Using Doppler tomography, we constructed an image of the gaseous disc in velocity space, and show that the observations are consistent with the precession of a fixed intensity pattern on a period of 27 ± 3 years. We speculate that the underlying cause of this dynamical activity is either a young, not fully circularised disc, or a perturbation of a previously stable and quiescent disc.

  9. [Biomechanical analysis of different ProDisc-C arthroplasty design parameters after implanted: a numerical sensitivity study based on finite element method].

    PubMed

    Tang, Qiaohong; Mo, Zhongjun; Yao, Jie; Li, Qi; Du, Chenfei; Wang, Lizhen; Fan, Yubo

    2014-12-01

    This study was aimed to estimate the effect of different ProDisc-C arthroplasty designs after it was implanted to C5-C6 cervicalspine. Finite element (FE) model of intact C5-C6 segments including the vertebrae and disc was developed and validated. Ball-and-socket artificial disc prosthesis model (ProDisc-C, Synthes) was implanted into the validated FE model and the curvature of the ProDisc-C prosthesis was varied. All models were loaded with compressed force 74 N and the pure moment of 1.8 Nm along flexion-extension and bilateral bending and axial torsion separately. The results indicated that the variation in the curvature of ball and socket configuration would influence the range of motion in flexion/extension, while there were not apparently differences under other conditions of loads. The method increasing the curvature will solve the stress concentration of the polyethylene, but it will also bring adverse outcomes, such as facet joint force increasing and ligament tension increasing. Therefore, the design of artificial discs should be considered comprehensively to reserve the range of motion as well as to avoid the adverse problems, so as not to affect the long-term clinical results.

  10. Archival-grade optical disc design and international standards

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujii, Toru; Kojyo, Shinichi; Endo, Akihisa; Kodaira, Takuo; Mori, Fumi; Shimizu, Atsuo

    2015-09-01

    Optical discs currently on the market exhibit large variations in life span among discs, making them unsuitable for certain business applications. To assess and potentially mitigate this problem, we performed accelerated degradation testing under standard ISO conditions, determined the probable disc failure mechanisms, and identified the essential criteria necessary for a stable disc composition. With these criteria as necessary conditions, we analyzed the physical and chemical changes that occur in the disc components, on the basis of which we determined technological measures to reduce these degradation processes. By applying these measures to disc fabrication, we were able to develop highly stable optical discs.

  11. Human Intervertebral Disc Internal Strain in Compression: The Effect of Disc Region, Loading Position, and Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    O’Connell, Grace D.; Vresilovic, Edward J.; Elliott, Dawn M.

    2012-01-01

    The primary function of the disc is mechanical; therefore, degenerative changes in disc mechanics and the interactions between the annulus fibrosus (AF) and nucleus pulposus (NP) in nondegenerate and degenerate discs are important to functional evaluation. The disc experiences complex loading conditions, including mechanical interactions between the pressurized NP and the surrounding fiber-reinforced AF. Our objective was to noninvasively evaluate the internal deformations of nondegenerate and degenerate human discs under axial compression with flexion, neutral, and extension positions using magnetic resonance imaging and image correlation. The side of applied bending (e.g., anterior AF in flexion) had higher tensile radial and compressive axial strains, and the opposite side of bending exhibited tensile axial strains even though the disc was loaded under axial compression. Degenerated discs exhibited higher compressive axial and tensile radial strains, which suggest that load distribution through the disc subcomponents are altered with degeneration, likely due to the depressurized NP placing more of the applied load directly on the AF. The posterior AF exhibited higher compressive axial and higher tensile radial strains than the other AF regions, and the strains were not correlated with degeneration, suggesting this region undergoes high strains throughout life, which may predispose it to failure and tears. In addition to understanding internal disc mechanics, this study provides important new data into the changes in internal strain with degeneration, data for validation of finite element models, and provides a technique and baseline data for evaluating surgical treatments. PMID:21337394

  12. Treatment of lumbar disc herniation by percutaneous laser disc decompression (PLDD) and modified PLDD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chi, Xiao fei; Li, Hong zhi; Wu, Ru zhou; Sui, Yun xian

    2005-07-01

    Objective: To study the micro-invasive operative method and to compare the effect of treatment of PLDD and modified PLDD for Lumbar Disc Herniation. Method: Vaporized part of the nucleus pulposus in single or multiple point after acupuncture into lumbar disc, to reach the purpose of the decompression of the lumbar disc. Result: Among the 19 cases of the regular PLDD group, the excellent and good rate was 63.2%, and among the 40 cases of the modified PLDD group, the excellent and good rate was 82.5%. Conclusion: The modified PLDD has good effect on the treatment for lumbar disc herniation.

  13. Particle rings and astrophysical accretion discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lovelace, R. V. E.; Romanova, M. M.

    2016-03-01

    Norman Rostoker had a wide range of interests and significant impact on the plasma physics research at Cornell during the time he was a Cornell professor. His interests ranged from the theory of energetic electron and ion beams and strong particle rings to the related topics of astrophysical accretion discs. We outline some of the topics related to rings and discs including the Rossby wave instability which leads to formation of anticyclonic vortices in astrophysical discs. These vorticies are regions of high pressure and act to trap dust particles which in turn may facilitate planetesimals growth in proto-planetary disks and could be important for planet formation. Analytical methods and global 3D magneto-hydrodynamic simulations have led to rapid advances in our understanding of discs in recent years.

  14. The coexistence of odd and even parity magnetic fields in disc galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moss, D.; Sokoloff, D.

    2008-08-01

    Aims: Naive dynamo models predict that large-scale magnetic fields generated in flattened disc-like structures will be steady and symmetric with respect to the equatorial plane, whereas fields generated in quasi-spherical volumes will be oscillatory and anti-symmetric. Spiral galaxies consist of a flattened disc and a quasi-spherical halo. We thus investigate to what extent this naive understanding of symmetry properties is realised in composite disc/halo models for galactic magnetic fields. Methods: We consider generation of galactic magnetic fields in the framework of galactic mean field dynamo theory, based on the effects of differential rotation and helical turbulent motions (the “α-effect”), using conventional profiles for both generators of magnetic field in the disc and halo. The halo and disc regions are mostly separated by a substantial contrast between their turbulent diffusivities, respectively ηd and halo η_h. We solve the corresponding equations of mean field electrodynamics numerically, using contrasts up to η_h/ηd =5, while realizing that it might be realistic to consider significantly larger values. Results: In contrast to our naive expectations coexisting steady symmetric (quadrupole-like) magnetic structures in the disc and oscillating antisymmetric (dipole-like) structures in the halo were not found. Usually one component of the dynamo system enslaves the other: a more dynamo-active disc creates a symmetric field in the halo as well as in the disc or, conversely, a more dynamo-active halo generates antisymmetric magnetic fields that pervade both halo and disc. Our most interesting models are mixed parity solutions at the transition between the two regimes. Conclusions: We consider the results obtained as presenting a challenge for the contemporary theory of galactic magnetic fields. We note that there is some recent observational evidence for a difference in symmetry properties between disc and halo. We see three possible resolutions of

  15. [Spontaneous resolution of a lumbar disc herniation].

    PubMed

    Gelabert-González, M; Serramito-García, R; Aran-Echabe, E; García-Allut, A

    2007-04-01

    Lumbar disc herniation is a common cause of lower leg radiculopathy and the most effective methods of treatment remain in question. Both surgical and nonsurgical treatments may provide a successful outcome in appropriately selected patients. The spontaneous resolution of herniated lumbar discs is a well-established phenomenon. The authors present a case of spontaneous regression of a herniated lumbar nucleus pulpous in a patient with radiculopathy. PMID:17497061

  16. Disc valve for sampling erosive process streams

    DOEpatents

    Mrochek, John E.; Dinsmore, Stanley R.; Chandler, Edward W.

    1986-01-01

    A four-port disc valve for sampling erosive, high temperature process streams. A rotatable disc defining opposed first and second sampling cavities rotates between fired faceplates defining flow passageways positioned to be alternatively in axial alignment with the first and second cavities. Silicon carbide inserts and liners composed of .alpha. silicon carbide are provided in the faceplates and in the sampling cavities to limit erosion while providing lubricity for a smooth and precise operation when used under harsh process conditions.

  17. Modelling planet-forming circumstellar discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woitke, P.

    2012-03-01

    With the improved wavelength coverage and instrumental capabilities to observe planet-forming circumstellar discs in the X-ray regime, the UV, and the near, mid and far infrared (XMM, HST, VLT, Spitzer, Herschel, soon ALMA) there is an increasing scientific need to develop equally sophisticated models for the physical, radiative and chemical processes in these discs. The discs are composed of dust and gas spanning 10 orders of magnitude in density, and temperatures differ by a factor of about 100. There is hard irradiation that provokes various non-LTE effects, thermal and position de-coupling of icy dust and gas, and the differential rotation causes instabilities and mixing. In the last few years, new theoretical models have been developed that simulate different aspects of these complicated physical systems. I will focus mainly on models that model the chemical, radiative, and heating & cooling processes in these discs, pointing out some important coupling mechanism and feedbacks between them. In the new major European FP7-SPACE project DIANA, we will use these novel disc models to coherently analyse and interpret new multi-wavelength data sets from X-ray to cm, probing in physics and chemistry in protoplanetary dicsc at different radii and depths. The general aim of the new models is to arrive at a common understanding of dust and gas, over the full radial extent of the disc, and to make use of continuum and line observations to constrain dust and gas properties in the disc. I will discuss where the various near-IR to sub-mm emissions (CO ro-vib, high-J CO lines, sub-mm CO lines, Spitzer water, Herschel/PACS water, Herschel/HIFI water, Herschel/PACS atomic lines) originate from, and how they are influenced by disc shape, irradiation, dust properties, and the chemical and radiative details.

  18. Spinal disc rehabilitation: a new technology.

    PubMed

    Goodman, C J

    1998-01-01

    Low back pain and "computer neck" are frequent complaints during visits to a physician. Back and neck pain affects up to 60% of all employees at some time in their careers and is personally and financially devastating. Repetitive mechanical stress leads to disc degeneration, loss of disc height, and other abnormalities. The PT machine, which is controlled and coordinated by onboard computer and fiberoptic feedback sensors, is the first biorobotic system that alleviates intradiscal pressure and myospasm.

  19. Modelling personal exposure to particulate air pollution: an assessment of time-integrated activity modelling, Monte Carlo simulation & artificial neural network approaches.

    PubMed

    McCreddin, A; Alam, M S; McNabola, A

    2015-01-01

    An experimental assessment of personal exposure to PM10 in 59 office workers was carried out in Dublin, Ireland. 255 samples of 24-h personal exposure were collected in real time over a 28 month period. A series of modelling techniques were subsequently assessed for their ability to predict 24-h personal exposure to PM10. Artificial neural network modelling, Monte Carlo simulation and time-activity based models were developed and compared. The results of the investigation showed that using the Monte Carlo technique to randomly select concentrations from statistical distributions of exposure concentrations in typical microenvironments encountered by office workers produced the most accurate results, based on 3 statistical measures of model performance. The Monte Carlo simulation technique was also shown to have the greatest potential utility over the other techniques, in terms of predicting personal exposure without the need for further monitoring data. Over the 28 month period only a very weak correlation was found between background air quality and personal exposure measurements, highlighting the need for accurate models of personal exposure in epidemiological studies.

  20. TRAIL, DR5 and caspase 3-dependent apoptosis in vessels of diseased human temporomandibular joint disc. An immunohistochemical study

    PubMed Central

    Loreto, C.; Almeida, L.E.; Migliore, M.R.; Caltabiano, M.; Leonardi, R.

    2010-01-01

    To evaluate the apoptosis involvement in the angiogenesis as a self-limiting process in patients with temporomandibular joint (TMJ) degenerated disc vessels, we assessed, by immunohistochemistry, the detection of TRAIL, its death receptor DR5 and caspase 3. TRAIL, its death receptor DR5 and caspase 3 expression were studied by immunohistochemistry in 15 TMJ discs displaced without reduction and in 4 unaffected discs. These apoptosis molecules were detected in the intima and media layers of newly formed vessels affected discs. In conclusion, vessels apoptosis activation in TMJ disc with ID could be regarded as a self-limiting process that try to leads to vessel regression; in this way an inhibition of angiogenic vessels may prove a key strategy in limiting pathological angiogenesis, by cutting off blood supply to tumors, or by reducing harmful inflammation. PMID:20839416

  1. Myoblast cytonemes mediate Wg signaling from the wing imaginal disc and Delta-Notch signaling to the air sac primordium

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Hai; Kornberg, Thomas B

    2015-01-01

    The flight muscles, dorsal air sacs, wing blades, and thoracic cuticle of the Drosophila adult function in concert, and their progenitor cells develop together in the wing imaginal disc. The wing disc orchestrates dorsal air sac development by producing decapentaplegic and fibroblast growth factor that travel via specific cytonemes in order to signal to the air sac primordium (ASP). Here, we report that cytonemes also link flight muscle progenitors (myoblasts) to disc cells and to the ASP, enabling myoblasts to relay signaling between the disc and the ASP. Frizzled (Fz)-containing myoblast cytonemes take up Wingless (Wg) from the disc, and Delta (Dl)-containing myoblast cytonemes contribute to Notch activation in the ASP. Wg signaling negatively regulates Dl expression in the myoblasts. These results reveal an essential role for cytonemes in Wg and Notch signaling and for a signal relay system in the myoblasts. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06114.001 PMID:25951303

  2. Reproductive performance of lactating dairy cows managed for first service using timed artificial insemination with or without detection of estrus using an activity-monitoring system.

    PubMed

    Fricke, P M; Giordano, J O; Valenza, A; Lopes, G; Amundson, M C; Carvalho, P D

    2014-05-01

    Lactating dairy cows (n=1,025) on a commercial dairy farm were randomly assigned at 10 ± 3 d in milk (DIM) to 1 of 3 treatments for submitting cows to first artificial insemination (AI) and were fitted with activity-monitoring tags (Heatime; SCR Engineers Ltd., Netanya, Israel) at 24 ± 3 DIM. Cows (n=339) in treatment 1 were inseminated based on increased activity from the end of the voluntary waiting period (50 DIM) until submission to an Ovsynch protocol; cows without increased activity from 21 to 65 DIM began an Ovsynch protocol at 65 ± 3 DIM, whereas cows without increased activity from 21 to 50 DIM but not from 51 to 79 DIM began an Ovsynch protocol at 79 ± 3 DIM. Cows (n=340) in treatment 2 were inseminated based on activity after the second PGF2α injection of a Presynch-Ovsynch protocol at 50 DIM, and cows without increased activity began an Ovsynch protocol at 65 ± 3 DIM. Cows (n=346) in treatment 3 were monitored for activity after the second PGF2α injection of a Presynch-Ovsynch protocol, but all cows received timed AI (TAI) at 75 ± 3 DIM after completing the Presynch-Ovsynch protocol. The activity-monitoring system detected increased activity in 56, 69, and 70% of cows in treatments 1, 2, and 3, respectively. Treatment-2 cows had the fewest average days to first AI (62.5), treatment-3 cows had the most average days to first AI (74.9), and treatment-1 cows had intermediate average days to first AI (67.4). Treatment-1 and -2 cows in which inseminations occurred as a combination between increased activity and TAI had fewer overall pregnancies per AI (P/AI) 35 d after AI (32% for both treatments) compared with treatment-3 cows, all of which received TAI after completing the Presynch-Ovsynch protocol (40%). Based on survival analysis, although the rate at which cows were inseminated differed among treatments, treatment did not affect the proportion of cows pregnant by 300 DIM. Thus, use of an activity-monitoring system to inseminate cows based on

  3. Catabolic effects of endothelial cell-derived microparticles on disc cells: Implications in intervertebral disc neovascularization and degeneration.

    PubMed

    Pohl, Pedro H I; Lozito, Thomas P; Cuperman, Thais; Yurube, Takashi; Moon, Hong J; Ngo, Kevin; Tuan, Rocky S; St Croix, Claudette; Sowa, Gwendolyn A; Rodrigues, Luciano M R; Kang, James D; Vo, Nam V

    2016-08-01

    Neovascularization of intervertebral discs, a phenomenon considered pathological since normal discs are primarily avascular structures, occurs most frequently in annulus fibrosus (AF) of degenerated discs. Endothelial cells (ECs) are involved in this process, but the mechanism of the interaction between AF and endothelial cells is unclear. In this study, we evaluated the effects on matrix catabolic activity of AF cells by the extracellular endothelial microparticles (EMPs) and soluble protein factors (SUP fraction) produced from ECs. Passage 1 human AF cells grown in monolayer cultures were treated for 72 h with 250 µg of EMPs or SUP fraction isolated from culture of the microvascular endothelial cell line, HEMC-I. Live-cell imaging revealed uptake of EMPs by AF cells. RT-PCR analysis demonstrated increased mRNA expression of MMP-1 (50.3-fold), MMP-3 (4.5-fold) and MMP-13 (5.5-fold) in AF cell cultures treated with EMPs compared to untreated control. Western analysis also demonstrated increased MMP protein expression in EMP-treated AF cells. AF cells treated with the SUP fraction also exhibited a dramatic increase in MMP mRNA and protein expression. Increased MMP expression is primarily due to EMP or SUP stimulation of AF cells since EMPs or SUP fraction alone contained negligible amount of MMPs. Interestingly, MMP activity was elevated in AF cell cultures treated with EMPs but not with SUP. This study revealed enhanced matrix catabolism as a molecular consequence of action of ECs on AF cells via EMPs, which might be expected during neo-angiogenesis of degenerating disc. © 2016 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 34:1466-1474, 2016. PMID:27246627

  4. Using tea as an artificial urine in a Canadian performance testing program for fission/activation products.

    PubMed

    Daka, Joseph N; Moodie, Gerry; DiNardo, Anthony; Kramer, Gary H

    2014-12-01

    In recent years, the National Calibration Reference Centre for Bioassay and In Vivo Monitoring (NCRC) at the Radiation Protection Bureau (RPB), Health Canada, has been conducting investigations with black tea to develop a matrix that can be used to replace urine in each of the following performance testing programs (PTP): (1) tritium, (2) carbon-14, (3) the DUAL (i.e., 3H/14C), and (4) fission/activation products (F/AP). A 1% tea solution with thimerosal, which had worked successfully for tritium, carbon-14, and the DUAL, was selected and tested for the F/AP PTP because of its similarity to urine in color and UV-VIS spectra. However, application of this tea to samples of the F/AP program containing 133Ba, 137Cs, 57Co, and 60Co produced precipitates, which was an unexpected result. Further experiments showed that replacement of thimerosal with an alcohol at about 5% eliminated the precipitation problem. The alcohol can be ethanol, methanol, or isopropanol. In the experiments, the 1% tea, preserved with alcohol, remained clear and stable for at least 100 d. The duration of each PTP for the NCRC is limited to 90 d. Application of the CNSC S-106 regulatory standard to the tea produced acceptable accuracy and precision results. It was concluded that a suitable tea matrix for the F/AP program had been found.

  5. CR TKA UHMWPE wear tested after artificial aging of the vitamin E treated gliding component by simulating daily patient activities.

    PubMed

    Schwiesau, Jens; Fritz, Bernhard; Kutzner, Ines; Bergmann, Georg; Grupp, Thomas M

    2014-01-01

    The wear behaviour of total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is dominated by two wear mechanisms: the abrasive wear and the delamination of the gliding components, where the second is strongly linked to aging processes and stress concentration in the material. The addition of vitamin E to the bulk material is a potential way to reduce the aging processes. This study evaluates the wear behaviour and delamination susceptibility of the gliding components of a vitamin E blended, ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) cruciate retaining (CR) total knee arthroplasty. Daily activities such as level walking, ascending and descending stairs, bending of the knee, and sitting and rising from a chair were simulated with a data set received from an instrumented knee prosthesis. After 5 million test cycles no structural failure of the gliding components was observed. The wear rate was with 5.62 ± 0.53 mg/million cycles falling within the limit of previous reports for established wear test methods.

  6. Effects of artificial infection of Litopenaeus vannamei by Micrococcus lysodeikticus and WSSV on the activity of immunity related enzymes.

    PubMed

    Sun, Cheng-Bo; Wang, Gang; Chan, Siuming F

    2015-10-01

    In this study, the activities of 5 immunity related enzymes namely acid phosphatase (ACP), alkaline phosphatase (AKP), phenoloxidase (PO), peroxidase (POD) and lysozyme phosphatase (LZM)) of Litopenaeus vannamei after they have been injected with different concentrations of Micrococcus lysodeikticus and the white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) were examined. The cumulative mortality at 0, 24, 48, 72, 96 h was obtained. Copy numbers of WSSV in L. vannamei after a single infection, secondary infection and concurrent infection were measured. Hemolymph samples of M. lysodeikticus and WSSV injected shrimp were collected at 0, 6, 12 24, 48, 72, 78, 84, 96 and 120 h. The results were: (i) The cumulative mortality of L. vannamei increased as the shrimp were infected with higher concentration of the bacteria; (ii) The most sensitive changes of ACP, AKP and LZM were in the 6.2 × 10(5), 6.2 × 10(6), 6.2 × 10(7) cfu/mL M. lysodeikticus group; (iii) ACP but LZM were more sensitive to M. lysodeikticus than WSSV, and AKP, PO and POD is more sensitive to WSSV; (iv) The copies of WSSV in the co-injected group were higher than WSSV-single infection and WSSV-bacteria-secondary infection group at 48 h. The amount of WSSV in L. vannamei of concurrent infection and WSSV-bacteria-secondary infection groups were higher than that of the WSSV-single infection group.

  7. The diversity of thick galactic discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kasparova, Anastasia V.; Katkov, Ivan Yu.; Chilingarian, Igor V.; Silchenko, Olga K.; Moiseev, Alexey V.; Borisov, Svyatoslav B.

    2016-07-01

    Although thick stellar discs are detected in nearly all edge-on disc galaxies, their formation scenarios still remain a matter of debate. Due to observational difficulties, there is a lack of information about their stellar populations. Using the Russian 6-m telescope BTA we collected deep spectra of thick discs in three edge-on S0-a disc galaxies located in different environments: NGC 4111 in a dense group, NGC 4710 in the Virgo cluster, and NGC 5422 in a sparse group. We see intermediate age (4-5 Gyr) metal rich ([Fe/H] ˜- 0.2…0.0 dex) stellar populations in NGC 4111 and NGC 4710. On the other hand, NGC 5422 does not harbour young stars, its disc is thick and old (10 Gyr), without evidence for a second component, and its α-element abundance suggests a 1.5-2 Gyr long formation epoch implying its formation at high redshift. Our results suggest the diversity of thick disc formation scenarios.

  8. Optic disc anomalies and frontonasal dysplasia

    PubMed Central

    Hodgkins, P; Lees, M; Lawson, J; Reardon, W; Leitch, J; Thorogood, P; Winter, R; Taylor, D

    1998-01-01

    AIMS—To document the optic disc abnormalities in patients with frontonasal dysplasia in association with basal encephalocele.
METHODS—Names and hospital numbers of patients with midline clefts were obtained from the ophthalmology and genetics database. Six patients were identified who had the following common findings: midline facial cleft with midline cleft lip and palate; hypertelorism; absent corpus callosum; basal (sphenoethmoidal) encephalocele; and pituitary deficiency (five out of six cases). Ophthalmic examination was performed with fundal photography where possible.
RESULTS—Two patients had unilateral and one a bilateral peripapillary staphyloma. Two patients had bilateral optic disc hypoplasia and one appeared to have a peripapillary staphyloma in one eye and a morning glory disc in the other.
CONCLUSION—Optic disc abnormalities were found in all patients with this constellation of clinical findings. This association appears to represent a distinct subgroup within the spectrum of frontonasal dysplasia. The presence of midline facial anomalies and any dysplastic disc should alert the physician as to the presence of an encephalocele.

 Keywords: frontonasal dysplasia; optic disc; encephalocele PMID:9602627

  9. Circumplanetary disc or circumplanetary envelope?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szulágyi, J.; Masset, F.; Lega, E.; Crida, A.; Morbidelli, A.; Guillot, T.

    2016-08-01

    We present three-dimensional simulations with nested meshes of the dynamics of the gas around a Jupiter mass planet with the JUPITER and FARGOCA codes. We implemented a radiative transfer module into the JUPITER code to account for realistic heating and cooling of the gas. We focus on the circumplanetary gas flow, determining its characteristics at very high resolution (80 per cent of Jupiter's diameter). In our nominal simulation where the temperature evolves freely by the radiative module and reaches 13000 K at the planet, a circumplanetary envelope was formed filling the entire Roche lobe. Because of our equation of state is simplified and probably overestimates the temperature, we also performed simulations with limited maximal temperatures in the planet region (1000, 1500, and 2000 K). In these fixed temperature cases circumplanetary discs (CPDs) were formed. This suggests that the capability to form a CPD is not simply linked to the mass of the planet and its ability to open a gap. Instead, the gas temperature at the planet's location, which depends on its accretion history, plays also fundamental role. The CPDs in the simulations are hot and cooling very slowly, they have very steep temperature and density profiles, and are strongly sub-Keplerian. Moreover, the CPDs are fed by a strong vertical influx, which shocks on the CPD surfaces creating a hot and luminous shock-front. In contrast, the pressure supported circumplanetary envelope is characterized by internal convection and almost stalled rotation.

  10. Overview: DVD-video disc set of seafloor transects during USGS research cruises in the Pacific Ocean

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chezar, Henry; Newman, Ivy

    2006-01-01

    Many USGS research programs involve the gathering of underwater seafloor video footage. This footage was captured on a variety of media, including Beta III and VHS tapes. Much of this media is now deteriorating, prompting the migration of this video footage onto DVD-Video discs. Advantages of using DVD-Video discs are: less storage space, ease of transport, wider distribution, and non-degradational viewing of the media. The videos in this particular collection (328 of them) were made on the ocean floor under President Reagan's Exclusive Economic Zone proclamation of 1983. There are now five copies of these 328 discs in existence: at the USGS libraries in Menlo Park, Calif., Denver, Colo., and Reston, Va.; at the USGS Publications Warehouse (masters from which to make copies for customers); and Hank Chezar's USGS Western Coastal and Marine Geology team archives. The purpose of Open-File Report 2004-1101 is to provide users with a listing of the available DVD-Video discs (with their Open-File Report numbers) along with a brief description of their associated USGS research activities. Each disc was created by first encoding the source video and audio into MPEG-2 streams using the MediaPress Pro hardware encoder. A menu for the disc was then made using Adobe Photoshop 6.0. The disc was then authored using DVD Studio Pro and subsequently written onto a DVD-R recordable disc.

  11. Mice with a naturally occurring DISC1 mutation display a broad spectrum of behaviors associated to psychiatric disorders

    PubMed Central

    Gómez-Sintes, Raquel; Kvajo, Mirna; Gogos, Joseph A.; Lucas, José J.

    2014-01-01

    Disrupted in schizophrenia-1 (DISC1) gene is associated with several neuropsychiatric disorders as it is disrupted by a balanced translocation involving chromosomes 1 and 11 in a large Scottish pedigree with high prevalence of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression. Since its identification, several mouse models with DISC1 genetic modifications have been generated using different approaches. Interestingly, a natural deletion of 25bp in the 129 mouse strain alters the DISC1 gene reading frame leading to a premature stop codon very close to the gene breakpoint in the mutant allele of the Scottish family. In the present study we confirmed that the 129DISC1Del mutation results in reduced level of full length DISC1 in hippocampus of heterozygous mice and we have characterized the behavioral consequences of heterozygous 129DISC1Del mutation in a mixed B6129 genetic background. We found alterations in spontaneous locomotor activity (hyperactivity in males and hypoactivity in females), deficits in pre-pulse inhibition (PPI) and also increased despair behavior in heterozygous 129DISC1Del mice, thus reproducing typical behaviors associated to psychiatric disorders. Since this mouse strain is widely and commercially available, we propose it as an amenable tool to study DISC1-related biochemical alterations and psychiatric behaviors. PMID:25126062

  12. Artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance.

    PubMed

    Porto-Pazos, Ana B; Veiguela, Noha; Mesejo, Pablo; Navarrete, Marta; Alvarellos, Alberto; Ibáñez, Oscar; Pazos, Alejandro; Araque, Alfonso

    2011-01-01

    Compelling evidence indicates the existence of bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. Astrocytes, a type of glial cells classically considered to be passive supportive cells, have been recently demonstrated to be actively involved in the processing and regulation of synaptic information, suggesting that brain function arises from the activity of neuron-glia networks. However, the actual impact of astrocytes in neural network function is largely unknown and its application in artificial intelligence remains untested. We have investigated the consequences of including artificial astrocytes, which present the biologically defined properties involved in astrocyte-neuron communication, on artificial neural network performance. Using connectionist systems and evolutionary algorithms, we have compared the performance of artificial neural networks (NN) and artificial neuron-glia networks (NGN) to solve classification problems. We show that the degree of success of NGN is superior to NN. Analysis of performances of NN with different number of neurons or different architectures indicate that the effects of NGN cannot be accounted for an increased number of network elements, but rather they are specifically due to astrocytes. Furthermore, the relative efficacy of NGN vs. NN increases as the complexity of the network increases. These results indicate that artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance, and established the concept of Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks, which represents a novel concept in Artificial Intelligence with implications in computational science as well as in the understanding of brain function. PMID:21526157

  13. Artificial Astrocytes Improve Neural Network Performance

    PubMed Central

    Porto-Pazos, Ana B.; Veiguela, Noha; Mesejo, Pablo; Navarrete, Marta; Alvarellos, Alberto; Ibáñez, Oscar; Pazos, Alejandro; Araque, Alfonso

    2011-01-01

    Compelling evidence indicates the existence of bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. Astrocytes, a type of glial cells classically considered to be passive supportive cells, have been recently demonstrated to be actively involved in the processing and regulation of synaptic information, suggesting that brain function arises from the activity of neuron-glia networks. However, the actual impact of astrocytes in neural network function is largely unknown and its application in artificial intelligence remains untested. We have investigated the consequences of including artificial astrocytes, which present the biologically defined properties involved in astrocyte-neuron communication, on artificial neural network performance. Using connectionist systems and evolutionary algorithms, we have compared the performance of artificial neural networks (NN) and artificial neuron-glia networks (NGN) to solve classification problems. We show that the degree of success of NGN is superior to NN. Analysis of performances of NN with different number of neurons or different architectures indicate that the effects of NGN cannot be accounted for an increased number of network elements, but rather they are specifically due to astrocytes. Furthermore, the relative efficacy of NGN vs. NN increases as the complexity of the network increases. These results indicate that artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance, and established the concept of Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks, which represents a novel concept in Artificial Intelligence with implications in computational science as well as in the understanding of brain function. PMID:21526157

  14. Disc outflows and high-luminosity true type 2 AGN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elitzur, Moshe; Netzer, Hagai

    2016-06-01

    The absence of intrinsic broad-line emission has been reported in a number of active galactic nuclei (AGN), including some with high Eddington ratios. Such `true type 2 AGN' are inherent to the disc-wind scenario for the broad-line region: broad-line emission requires a minimal column density, implying a minimal outflow rate and thus a minimal accretion rate. Here we perform a detailed analysis of the consequences of mass conservation in the process of accretion through a central disc. The resulting constraints on luminosity are consistent with all the cases where claimed detections of true type 2 AGN pass stringent criteria, and predict that intrinsic broad-line emission can disappear at luminosities as high as ˜4 × 1046 erg s-1 and any Eddington ratio, though more detections can be expected at Eddington ratios below ˜1 per cent. Our results are applicable to every disc outflow model, whatever its details and whether clumpy or smooth, irrespective of the wind structure and its underlying dynamics. While other factors, such as changes in spectral energy distribution or covering factor, can affect the intensities of broad emission lines, within this scenario they can only produce true type 2 AGN of higher luminosity then those prescribed by mass conservation.

  15. Compressive vs Solenoidal Turbulence and Violent Disc Instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandelker, Nir; Dekel, Avishai; Inoue, Shigeki; Ceverino, Daniel; Primack, Joel

    2015-08-01

    High redshift star-forming galaxies (SFGs) exhibit star-formation rates (SFR) 20-100 times higher than local SFGs. This increased SFR is due to much higher gas fractions and surface densities prevalent in high redshift SFG. Such high gas fractions cause the disc to become violently unstable and undergo a phase of violent disc instability (VDI). During the VDI phase, there is rapid inflow of gas towards the galactic centre with inflow times comparable to the disc orbital time, which can lead to a compact "blue nugget". In addition, giant ~kpc scale star-forming clumps are formed, the most massive of which survive dtellar feedback and migrate towards the centre, where they coalesce in the growing bulge. While the existence of giant clumps is commonly associated with Toomre instability, high resolution cosmological simulations of galaxy formation show that active clump formation occurs even in regions where the Toomre Q parameter is well above the threshold for stability. The simulations suggest instead a non-linear instability, where frequent minor mergers and intense inflow by cold streams increase the compressive mode of turbulence relative to the solenoidal mode. We find this can induce clump formation even in regions that should be stable according to linear Toomre theory. Thus we show that mergers, smooth accretion from the cosmic web and VDI all go hand in hand in driving galaxy evolution at high redshift.

  16. Artificial Intelligence for the Evaluation of Operational Parameters Influencing Nitrification and Nitrifiers in an Activated Sludge Process.

    PubMed

    Awolusi, Oluyemi Olatunji; Nasr, Mahmoud; Kumari, Sheena; Bux, Faizal

    2016-07-01

    Nitrification at a full-scale activated sludge plant treating municipal wastewater was monitored over a period of 237 days. A combination of fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) were used for identifying and quantifying the dominant nitrifiers in the plant. Adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS), Pearson's correlation coefficient, and quadratic models were employed in evaluating the plant operational conditions that influence the nitrification performance. The ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) abundance was within the range of 1.55 × 10(8)-1.65 × 10(10) copies L(-1), while Nitrobacter spp. and Nitrospira spp. were 9.32 × 10(9)-1.40 × 10(11) copies L(-1) and 2.39 × 10(9)-3.76 × 10(10) copies L(-1), respectively. Specific nitrification rate (qN) was significantly affected by temperature (r 0.726, p 0.002), hydraulic retention time (HRT) (r -0.651, p 0.009), and ammonia loading rate (ALR) (r 0.571, p 0.026). Additionally, AOB was considerably influenced by HRT (r -0.741, p 0.002) and temperature (r 0.517, p 0.048), while HRT negatively impacted Nitrospira spp. (r -0.627, p 0.012). A quadratic combination of HRT and food-to-microorganism (F/M) ratio also impacted qN (r (2) 0.50), AOB (r (2) 0.61), and Nitrospira spp. (r (2) 0.72), while Nitrobacter spp. was considerably influenced by a polynomial function of F/M ratio and temperature (r (2) 0.49). The study demonstrated that ANFIS could be used as a tool to describe the factors influencing nitrification process at full-scale wastewater treatment plants. PMID:26906468

  17. Artificial Intelligence for the Evaluation of Operational Parameters Influencing Nitrification and Nitrifiers in an Activated Sludge Process.

    PubMed

    Awolusi, Oluyemi Olatunji; Nasr, Mahmoud; Kumari, Sheena; Bux, Faizal

    2016-07-01

    Nitrification at a full-scale activated sludge plant treating municipal wastewater was monitored over a period of 237 days. A combination of fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) were used for identifying and quantifying the dominant nitrifiers in the plant. Adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS), Pearson's correlation coefficient, and quadratic models were employed in evaluating the plant operational conditions that influence the nitrification performance. The ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) abundance was within the range of 1.55 × 10(8)-1.65 × 10(10) copies L(-1), while Nitrobacter spp. and Nitrospira spp. were 9.32 × 10(9)-1.40 × 10(11) copies L(-1) and 2.39 × 10(9)-3.76 × 10(10) copies L(-1), respectively. Specific nitrification rate (qN) was significantly affected by temperature (r 0.726, p 0.002), hydraulic retention time (HRT) (r -0.651, p 0.009), and ammonia loading rate (ALR) (r 0.571, p 0.026). Additionally, AOB was considerably influenced by HRT (r -0.741, p 0.002) and temperature (r 0.517, p 0.048), while HRT negatively impacted Nitrospira spp. (r -0.627, p 0.012). A quadratic combination of HRT and food-to-microorganism (F/M) ratio also impacted qN (r (2) 0.50), AOB (r (2) 0.61), and Nitrospira spp. (r (2) 0.72), while Nitrobacter spp. was considerably influenced by a polynomial function of F/M ratio and temperature (r (2) 0.49). The study demonstrated that ANFIS could be used as a tool to describe the factors influencing nitrification process at full-scale wastewater treatment plants.

  18. Lifestyle factors and lumbar disc disease: results of a German multi-center case-control study (EPILIFT)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Introduction In the large-scale case-control study EPILIFT, we investigated the dose-response relationship between lifestyle factors (weight, smoking amount, cumulative duration of different sports activities) and lumbar disc disease. Methods In four German study regions (Frankfurt am Main, Freiburg, Halle/Saale, Regensburg), 564 male and female patients with lumbar disc herniation and 351 patients with lumbar disc narrowing (chondrosis) aged 25 to 70 years were prospectively recruited. From the regional population registers, 901 population control subjects were randomly selected. In a structured personal interview, we enquired as to body weight at different ages, body height, cumulative smoking amount and cumulative duration of different sports activities. Confounders were selected according to biological plausibility and to the change-in-estimate criterion. Adjusted, gender-stratified odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals were calculated using unconditional logistic regression analysis. Results The results of this case-control study reveal a positive association between weight and lumbar disc herniation as well as lumbar disc narrowing among men and women. A medium amount of pack-years was associated with lumbar disc herniation and narrowing in men and women. A non-significantly lowered risk of lumbar disc disease was found in men with high levels of cumulative body building and strength training. Conclusions According to our multi-center case-control study, body weight might be related to lumbar disc herniation as well as to lumbar disc narrowing. Further research should clarify the potential protective role of body building or strength training on lumbar disc disease. PMID:20955546

  19. Indications for full prosthetic disc arthroplasty: a correlation of clinical outcome against a variety of indications.

    PubMed

    Bertagnoli, Rudolf; Kumar, Selva

    2002-10-01

    In this prospective study, a total of 134 prosthetic discs were replaced in 108 patients undergoing total disc replacement surgeries for degenerative disc disease. It was the aim of this study to correlate the clinical findings and the outcome of our patients treated with Prodisc II prostheses for various indications and to formulate indication criteria for disc replacement surgeries. The discs were implanted at L5/S1 in 61 patients, L5/L6 in 3 patients, L4/L5 in 31 patients, L3/L4 in 7 patients, and L2/L3 in 3 patients. There were 12 patients with two-level implants: from L4 to S1 in 11 of them and from L2 to L5 in the remaining one. Two patients also had three-level implants, from L3 to S1. Follow-up evaluation included plain radiographs, physical evaluation, and subjective evaluation by the patient using the Oswestry scale, the visual analog pain scale, and the SF-36V2 well-being questionnaire. The evaluation exercise showed that 90.8% of patients had excellent results, 7.4% had good results and 1.8% had fair results, with no poor results seen. Postoperatively, the average vertebral motion was increased in all patients at the operated level. Progression of disc degeneration at the adjacent levels was noted in ten patients. The average time to resuming activities of daily living unaided was 2.3 weeks. No implant failures or complications due to surgery were encountered in this study. Total prosthesis disc replacement for degenerative disc disease was found to be a good treatment modality, provided proper patient selection and criteria are adhered to. We were able to formulate indication criteria based on this. PMID:12384734

  20. Effects of Tobacco Smoking on the Degeneration of the Intervertebral Disc: A Finite Element Study.

    PubMed

    Elmasry, Shady; Asfour, Shihab; de Rivero Vaccari, Juan Pablo; Travascio, Francesco

    2015-01-01

    Tobacco smoking is associated with numerous pathological conditions. Compelling experimental evidence associates smoking to the degeneration of the intervertebral disc (IVD). In particular, it has been shown that nicotine down-regulates both the proliferation rate and glycosaminoglycan (GAG) biosynthesis of disc cells. Moreover, tobacco smoking causes the constriction of the vascular network surrounding the IVD, thus reducing the exchange of nutrients and anabolic agents from the blood vessels to the disc. It has been hypothesized that both nicotine presence in the IVD and the reduced solute exchange are responsible for the degeneration of the disc due to tobacco smoking, but their effects on tissue homeostasis have never been quantified. In this study, a previously presented computational model describing the homeostasis of the IVD was deployed to investigate the effects of impaired solute supply and nicotine-mediated down-regulation of cell proliferation and biosynthetic activity on the health of the disc. We found that the nicotine-mediated down-regulation of cell anabolism mostly affected the GAG concentration at the cartilage endplate, reducing it up to 65% of the value attained in normal physiological conditions. In contrast, the reduction of solutes exchange between blood vessels and disc tissue mostly affected the nucleus pulposus, whose cell density and GAG levels were reduced up to 50% of their normal physiological levels. The effectiveness of quitting smoking on the regeneration of a degenerated IVD was also investigated, and showed to have limited benefit on the health of the disc. A cell-based therapy in conjunction with smoke cessation provided significant improvements in disc health, suggesting that, besides quitting smoking, additional treatments should be implemented in the attempt to recover the health of an IVD degenerated by tobacco smoking.

  1. Effects of Tobacco Smoking on the Degeneration of the Intervertebral Disc: A Finite Element Study

    PubMed Central

    Elmasry, Shady; Asfour, Shihab; de Rivero Vaccari, Juan Pablo; Travascio, Francesco

    2015-01-01

    Tobacco smoking is associated with numerous pathological conditions. Compelling experimental evidence associates smoking to the degeneration of the intervertebral disc (IVD). In particular, it has been shown that nicotine down-regulates both the proliferation rate and glycosaminoglycan (GAG) biosynthesis of disc cells. Moreover, tobacco smoking causes the constriction of the vascular network surrounding the IVD, thus reducing the exchange of nutrients and anabolic agents from the blood vessels to the disc. It has been hypothesized that both nicotine presence in the IVD and the reduced solute exchange are responsible for the degeneration of the disc due to tobacco smoking, but their effects on tissue homeostasis have never been quantified. In this study, a previously presented computational model describing the homeostasis of the IVD was deployed to investigate the effects of impaired solute supply and nicotine-mediated down-regulation of cell proliferation and biosynthetic activity on the health of the disc. We found that the nicotine-mediated down-regulation of cell anabolism mostly affected the GAG concentration at the cartilage endplate, reducing it up to 65% of the value attained in normal physiological conditions. In contrast, the reduction of solutes exchange between blood vessels and disc tissue mostly affected the nucleus pulposus, whose cell density and GAG levels were reduced up to 50% of their normal physiological levels. The effectiveness of quitting smoking on the regeneration of a degenerated IVD was also investigated, and showed to have limited benefit on the health of the disc. A cell-based therapy in conjunction with smoke cessation provided significant improvements in disc health, suggesting that, besides quitting smoking, additional treatments should be implemented in the attempt to recover the health of an IVD degenerated by tobacco smoking. PMID:26301590

  2. Functional expression of oxidative phosphorylation proteins in the rod outer segment disc.

    PubMed

    Panfoli, Isabella; Calzia, Daniela; Bruschi, Maurizio; Oneto, Michele; Bianchini, Paolo; Ravera, Silvia; Petretto, Andrea; Diaspro, Alberto; Candiano, Giovanni

    2013-08-01

    The rod Outer Segment (OS) disc, an organelle devoid of mitochondria, is specialized in phototransduction, a process requiring a continual chemical energy supply. We have shown that OS discs express functional mitochondrial electron transport chains, Fo F1 -ATP synthase and the tricarboxylic acid cycle enzymes, all mitochondrial features. Here, we focus on oxygen consumption and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) synthesis by OS discs analysing electron transport chain I-III-IV and II-II-IV pathways, supported by reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide and succinate, respectively. Interestingly, respiratory capacity of discs was measurable also in the presence of 3-hydroxy-butyrrate, a typical metabolic substrate for the brain. Data were supported by a two-dimensional electrophoresis analyses conducted as our previous one, but focused to those mitochondrial proteins that are involved in oxidative phosphorylation. Carbonic anhydrase was also found active in OS discs. Moreover, colocalization of Rhodopsin with respiratory complex I and ATP synthase seems a further step in the characterization of some proteins typical of the mitochondrial inner membranes that are expressed in the rod discs. The existence of oxygen utilization in the outer retina, likely supplying ATP for phototransduction, may shed light on some retinal pathologies related to oxidative stress of the outer retina. PMID:23322616

  3. Neurexin-Neuroligin Synaptic Complex Regulates Schizophrenia-Related DISC1/Kal-7/Rac1 "Signalosome".

    PubMed

    Owczarek, Sylwia; Bang, Marie Louise; Berezin, Vladimir

    2015-01-01

    Neurexins (NXs) and neuroligins (NLs) are cell adhesion molecules that are localized at opposite sites of synaptic membranes. They interact with each other to promote the assembly, maintenance, and function of synapses in the central nervous system. Both NX and NL are cleaved from a membrane-attached intracellular domain in an activity-dependent manner, generating the soluble ectodomain of NX or NL. Expression of the NX1 and NX3 genes in the brain appears to be regulated by a schizophrenia-related protein, DISC1. Here, we show that soluble ecto-NX1β can regulate the expression of DISC1 and induce signaling downstream of DISC1. We also show that NL1 binds to a well-characterized DISC1 interaction partner, Kal-7, and this interaction can be compromised by DISC1. Our results indicate that the NX/NL synaptic complex is intrinsically involved in the regulation of DISC1 function, thus contributing to a better understanding of the pathology of schizophrenia.

  4. NASA Remote Sensing Data in Earth Sciences: Processing, Archiving, Distribution, Applications at the GES DISC

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leptoukh, Gregory G.

    2005-01-01

    The NASA Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC) is one of the major Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs) archiving and distributing remote sensing data from the NASA's Earth Observing System. In addition to providing just data, the GES DISC/DAAC has developed various value-adding processing services. A particularly useful service is data processing a t the DISC (i.e., close to the input data) with the users' algorithms. This can take a number of different forms: as a configuration-managed algorithm within the main processing stream; as a stand-alone program next to the on-line data storage; as build-it-yourself code within the Near-Archive Data Mining (NADM) system; or as an on-the-fly analysis with simple algorithms embedded into the web-based tools (to avoid downloading unnecessary all the data). The existing data management infrastructure at the GES DISC supports a wide spectrum of options: from data subsetting data spatially and/or by parameter to sophisticated on-line analysis tools, producing economies of scale and rapid time-to-deploy. Shifting processing and data management burden from users to the GES DISC, allows scientists to concentrate on science, while the GES DISC handles the data management and data processing at a lower cost. Several examples of successful partnerships with scientists in the area of data processing and mining are presented.

  5. Effect of Gas Accretion Disc Profile on Orbital Parameters of the Accreted Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shukirgaliyev, Bekdaulet T.; Panamarev, Taras P.; Naurzbaeva, Aisha Zh.; Kalambay, Mukhagali T.; Makukov, Maxim A.; Vilkoviskij, Emmanuil Y.; Omarov, Chingis T.; Berczik, Peter; Just, Andreas; Spurzem, Rainer

    2016-10-01

    The results of studies of the effect of the gas disk and its profile on the dynamics of active galactic nuclei are presented. The study was conducted with a numerical model of galactic nucleus based on phiGRAPE+GPU comprising three subsystems - a central supermassive black hole, gaseous accretion disc, and compact stellar cluster. The evolution of the compact stellar cluster is modeled with direct integration (N-body simulation), while the black hole and gaseous disc are represented phenomenologically: the black hole is introduced as an external potential (fixed in space but variable in time due to black hole mass growth), and the gaseous disc is introduced as spatial time-independent density distribution. We examined and compared with each other orbital parameters of accreting stars for model of the galactic nucleus with gas disc of constant and variable thickness, as well as without gas. It was found that in the presence of a gaseous disk almost half of the accreted particles interact strongly with the gas and are captured by the disc before accretion, while more than 85% of particles are affected to some extent by the disc prior to accretion. This suggests that interaction of the stellar cluster with the gas disk in the galactic nucleus might lead to the formation of stellar disk in the central part of the nucleus.

  6. Local and global aspects of the linear MRI in accretion discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Latter, Henrik N.; Fromang, Sebastien; Faure, Julien

    2015-11-01

    We revisit the linear magnetorotational instability (MRI) in a cylindrical model of an accretion disc and uncover a number of attractive results overlooked in previous treatments. In particular, we elucidate the connection between local axisymmetric modes and global modes, and show that a local channel flow corresponds to the evanescent part of a global mode. In addition, we find that the global problem reproduces the local dispersion relation without approximation, a result that helps explain the success the local analysis enjoys in predicting global growth rates. MRI channel flows are non-linear solutions to the governing equations in the local shearing box. However, only a small subset of MRI modes share the same property in global disc models, providing further evidence that the prominence of channels in local boxes is artificial. Finally, we verify our results via direct numerical simulations with the Godunov code RAMSES.

  7. Apple Fool! An Introduction to Artificial Flavors.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Journal of Chemical Education, 2003

    2003-01-01

    Presents a science activity on consumer chemistry in which students explore artificial flavors that are commonly used in foods, such as isoamyl acetate and methyl salicylate. Includes instructor information and a student worksheet. (YDS)

  8. Preparation of ormetoprim-sulfadimethoxine-medicated discs for disc diffusion assay

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Romet ( a blend of ormetoprim and sulfadimethoxine) is a type A medicated article for the manufacture of medicated feed in the catfish industry. Recently, the commercial manufacture of ormetoprim-sulfadimethoxine susceptibility discs was discontinued. Ormetoprim-sulfadimethoxine discs were prepare...

  9. Magnetorotational instability in protoplanetary discs: the effect of dust grains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salmeron, Raquel; Wardle, Mark

    2008-08-01

    field strength is reduced to only ~16 mG (10 mG) when the grain size is reduced to 0.1μm. In contrast, when the grains are assumed to have settled, MRI-unstable modes are found for B <~ 800 mG at 5 au and 250 mG at 10 au. Similarly, as the typical size of the dust grains diminishes, the vertical extent of the dead zone increases, as expected. For 0.1μm grains, the disc is magnetically inactive within two scaleheights of the mid-plane at both radii, but perturbations grow over the entire section of the disc for grain sizes of 1μm or larger. When dust grains are mixed with the gas, perturbations that incorporate Hall diffusion grow faster, and are active over a more extended cross-section of the disc, than those obtained under the ambipolar diffusion approximation. Note that the stabilizing effect of small dust grains (e.g. a = 0.1μm) is not strong enough to completely suppress the perturbations. We find, in fact, that even in this scenario, the magnetic field is able to couple to the gas and shear over a range of fluid conditions. Despite the low-magnetic coupling, MRI modes grow for a range of magnetic field strengths and Hall diffusion largely determines the properties of the perturbations in the inner regions of the disc.

  10. Notochordal Cells in the Adult Intervertebral Disc: New Perspective on an Old Question

    PubMed Central

    Risbud, Makarand V.; Shapiro, Irving M.

    2011-01-01

    The intervertebral disc is a soft tissue, positioned between each of the vertebrae, that accommodates applied biomechanical forces to the spine. The central compartment of the disc contains the nucleus pulposus (NP), which is enclosed by the annulus fibrosus and the endplate cartilage. The NP is derived from the notochord, a rodlike structure of mesodermal origin. Development of the notochord is tightly regulated by interactive transcription factors and target genes. Since a number of these molecules are unique, they have been used for cell lineage and fate mapping studies of tissues of the intervertebral disc. These studies have shown that in a number of species including human, NP tissue retains notochordal cells throughout life. In the adult NP, there are present both large and small notochordal cells, as well as a progenitor cell population which can differentiate along the mesengenic pathway. Since tissue renewal in the intervertebral disc is dependent on the ability of these cells to commit to the NP lineage and undergo terminal differentiation, studies have been performed to assess which signaling pathways may regulate these activities. The notch signaling pathway is active in the intervertebral disc and is responsive to hypoxia, probably through HIF-1α. From a disease viewpoint, it is hypothesized that an oxemic shift, possibly mediated by alterations in the vascular supply to the tissues of the disc, would be expected to lead to a failure in notochordal progenitor cell activation and a decrease in the number of differentiated cells. In turn, this would lead to decrements in function and enhancement of the effect of agents that are known to promote disc degeneration. PMID:21967331

  11. Notochordal cells in the adult intervertebral disc: new perspective on an old question.

    PubMed

    Risbud, Makarand V; Shapiro, Irving M

    2011-01-01

    The intervertebral disc is a tissue positioned between each of the vertebrae that accommodates applied biomechanical forces to the spine. The central compartment of the disc contains the nucleus pulposus (NP) which is enclosed by the annulus fibrosus and the endplate cartilage.The NP is derived from the notochord, a rod-like structure of mesodermal origin. Development of the notochord is tightly regulated by interactive transcription factors and target genes. Since a number of these molecules are unique they have be used for cell lineage and fate mapping studies of tissues of the intervertebral disc. These studies have shown that in a number of species including human, NP tissue retains notochordal cells throughout life. In the adult NP, there are present both large and small notochordal cells, as well as a progenitor cell population which can differentiate along the mesengenic pathway. Since tissue renewal in the intervertebral disc is dependent on the ability of these cells to commit to the NP lineage and undergo terminal differentiation, studies have been performed to assess which signaling pathways may regulate these activities. The notch signaling pathway is active in the intervertebral disc and is responsive to hypoxia, probably through HIF-1a. From a disease viewpoint, it is hypothesized that an oxemic shift, possibly mediated by alterations in the vascular supply to the tissues of the disc would be expected to lead to a failure in notochordal progenitor cell activation and a decrease in the number of differentiated cells. In turn, this would lead to decrements in function and enhancement of the effect of agents that are known to promote disc degeneration.

  12. A pilot study of the prevalence of lumbar disc degeneration in elite athletes with lower back pain at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games

    PubMed Central

    Ong, A; Anderson, J; Roche, J

    2003-01-01

    Objectives: To observe the prevalence of lumbar intervertebral disc degeneration in elite athletes as compared with published literature of changes seen in non-athletes—that is, normal population. Methods: The lumbar spines of 31 Olympic athletes who presented to the Olympic Polyclinic with low back pain and/or sciatica were examined using magnetic resonance imaging. Three criteria were looked at: (a) the loss of disc signal intensity; (b) the loss of disc height; (c) the presence of disc displacement. The results were then recorded and correlated with the lumbar levels. Results: The disc signal intensity was progressively reduced the more caudal the disc space. It was most common at the L5/S1 level, and, of the abnormal group, 36% (n = 11) showed the most degenerative change. Disc height reduction was also found to be most common at the L5/S1 level. However, the most common height reduction was only mild. A similar trend of increased prevalence of disc herniation was noted with more caudal levels. At the L5/S1 level, 58% were found to have an element of disc displacement, most of which were disc bulges. Compared with changes seen in the normal population (non-athletes) as described in the literature, disc degeneration defined by the above criteria was found to be significantly more severe in these Olympic athletes. Conclusions: Although the study was limited, the results suggest that elite athletes have a greater prevalence and greater degree of lumbar disc degeneration than the normal population. A more detailed follow up study should be considered to investigate which particular training activities have the most impact on the lumbar spine, and how to modify training methods so as to avoid the long term sequelae of degenerative disc disease of the lumbar spine. PMID:12782554

  13. Reoperations Following Cervical Disc Replacement.

    PubMed

    Skovrlj, Branko; Lee, Dong-Ho; Caridi, John Michael; Cho, Samuel Kang-Wook

    2015-06-01

    Cervical disc replacement (CDR) has emerged as an alternative surgical option to cervical arthrodesis. With increasing numbers of patients and longer follow-ups, complications related to the device and/or aging spine are growing, leaving us with a new challenge in the management and surgical revision of CDR. The purpose of this study is to review the current literature regarding reoperations following CDR and to discuss about the approaches and solutions for the current and future potential complications associated with CDR. The published rates of reoperation (mean, 1.0%; range, 0%-3.1%), revision (mean, 0.2%; range, 0%-0.5%), and removal (mean, 1.2%; range, 0%-1.9%) following CDR are low and comparable to the published rates of reoperation (mean, 1.7%; range; 0%-3.4%), revision (mean, 1.5%; range, 0%-4.7%), and removal (mean, 2.0%; range, 0%-3.4%) following cervical arthrodesis. The surgical interventions following CDR range from the repositioning to explantation followed by fusion or the reimplantation to posterior foraminotomy or fusion. Strict patient selection, careful preoperative radiographic review and surgical planning, as well as surgical technique may reduce adverse events and the need for future intervention. Minimal literature and no guidelines exist for the approaches and techniques in revision and for the removal of implants following CDR. Adherence to strict indications and precise surgical technique may reduce the number of reoperations, revisions, and removals following CDR. Long-term follow-up studies are needed, assessing the implant survivorship and its effect on the revision and removal rates. PMID:26097667

  14. Structures induced by companions in galactic discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kyziropoulos, P. E.; Efthymiopoulos, C.; Gravvanis, G. A.; Patsis, P. A.

    2016-09-01

    Using N-body simulations we study the structures induced on a galactic disc by repeated flybys of a companion in decaying eccentric orbit around the disc. Our system is composed by a stellar disc, bulge and live dark matter halo, and we study the system's dynamical response to a sequence of a companion's flybys, when we vary i) the disc's temperature (parameterized by Toomre's Q-parameter) and ii) the companion's mass and initial orbit. We use a new 3D Cartesian grid code: MAIN (Mesh-adaptive Approximate Inverse N-body solver). The main features of MAIN are reviewed, with emphasis on the use of a new Symmetric Factored Approximate Sparse Inverse (SFASI) matrix in conjunction with the multigrid method that allows the efficient solution of Poisson's equation in three space variables. We find that: i) companions need to be assigned initial masses in a rather narrow window of values in order to produce significant and more long-standing non-axisymmetric structures (bars and spirals) in the main galaxy's disc by the repeated flyby mechanism. ii) a crucial phenomenon is the antagonism between companion-excited and self-excited modes on the disc. Values of Q > 1.5 are needed in order to allow for the growth of the companion-excited modes to prevail over the the growth of the disc's self-excited modes. iii) We give evidence that the companion-induced spiral structure is best represented by a density wave with pattern speed nearly constant in a region extending from the ILR to a radius close to, but inside, corotation.

  15. Cervical disc hernia operations through posterior laminoforaminotomy

    PubMed Central

    Yolas, Coskun; Ozdemir, Nuriye Guzin; Okay, Hilmi Onder; Kanat, Ayhan; Senol, Mehmet; Atci, Ibrahim Burak; Yilmaz, Hakan; Coban, Mustafa Kemal; Yuksel, Mehmet Onur; Kahraman, Umit

    2016-01-01

    Objective: The most common used technique for posterolateral cervical disc herniations is anterior approach. However, posterior cervical laminotoforaminomy can provide excellent results in appropriately selected patients with foraminal stenosis in either soft disc prolapse or cervical spondylosis. The purpose of this study was to present the clinical outcomes following posterior laminoforaminotomy in patients with radiculopathy. Materials and Methods: We retrospectively evaluated 35 patients diagnosed with posterolateral cervical disc herniation and cervical spondylosis with foraminal stenosis causing radiculopathy operated by the posterior cervical keyhole laminoforaminotomy between the years 2010 and 2015. Results: The file records and the radiographic images of the 35 patients were assessed retrospectively. The mean age was 46.4 years (range: 34-66 years). Of the patients, 19 were males and 16 were females. In all of the patients, the neurologic deficit observed was radiculopathy. The posterolaterally localized disc herniations and the osteophytic structures were on the left side in 18 cases and on the right in 17 cases. In 10 of the patients, the disc level was at C5-6, in 18 at C6-7, in 2 at C3-4, in 2 at C4-5, in 1 at C7-T1, in 1 patient at both C5-6 and C6-7, and in 1 at both C4-5 and C5-6. In 14 of these 35 patients, both osteophytic structures and protruded disc herniation were present. Intervertebral foramen stenosis was present in all of the patients with osteophytes. Postoperatively, in 31 patients the complaints were relieved completely and four patients had complaints of neck pain and paresthesia radiating to the arm (the success of operation was 88.5%). On control examinations, there was no finding of instability or cervical kyphosis. Conclusion: Posterior cervical laminoforaminotomy is an alternative appropriate choice in both cervical soft disc herniations and cervical stenosis. PMID:27217655

  16. Artificial neural network (ANN) method for modeling of sunset yellow dye adsorption using zinc oxide nanorods loaded on activated carbon: Kinetic and isotherm study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maghsoudi, M.; Ghaedi, M.; Zinali, A.; Ghaedi, A. M.; Habibi, M. H.

    2015-01-01

    In this research, ZnO nanoparticle loaded on activated carbon (ZnO-NPs-AC) was synthesized simply by a low cost and nontoxic procedure. The characterization and identification have been completed by different techniques such as SEM and XRD analysis. A three layer artificial neural network (ANN) model is applicable for accurate prediction of dye removal percentage from aqueous solution by ZnO-NRs-AC following conduction of 270 experimental data. The network was trained using the obtained experimental data at optimum pH with different ZnO-NRs-AC amount (0.005-0.015 g) and 5-40 mg/L of sunset yellow dye over contact time of 0.5-30 min. The ANN model was applied for prediction of the removal percentage of present systems with Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm (LMA), a linear transfer function (purelin) at output layer and a tangent sigmoid transfer function (tansig) in the hidden layer with 6 neurons. The minimum mean squared error (MSE) of 0.0008 and coefficient of determination (R2) of 0.998 were found for prediction and modeling of SY removal. The influence of parameters including adsorbent amount, initial dye concentration, pH and contact time on sunset yellow (SY) removal percentage were investigated and optimal experimental conditions were ascertained. Optimal conditions were set as follows: pH, 2.0; 10 min contact time; an adsorbent dose of 0.015 g. Equilibrium data fitted truly with the Langmuir model with maximum adsorption capacity of 142.85 mg/g for 0.005 g adsorbent. The adsorption of sunset yellow followed the pseudo-second-order rate equation.

  17. Isotherm and kinetics study of malachite green adsorption onto copper nanowires loaded on activated carbon: artificial neural network modeling and genetic algorithm optimization.

    PubMed

    Ghaedi, M; Shojaeipour, E; Ghaedi, A M; Sahraei, Reza

    2015-05-01

    In this study, copper nanowires loaded on activated carbon (Cu-NWs-AC) was used as novel efficient adsorbent for the removal of malachite green (MG) from aqueous solution. This new material was synthesized through simple protocol and its surface properties such as surface area, pore volume and functional groups were characterized with different techniques such XRD, BET and FESEM analysis. The relation between removal percentages with variables such as solution pH, adsorbent dosage (0.005, 0.01, 0.015, 0.02 and 0.1g), contact time (1-40min) and initial MG concentration (5, 10, 20, 70 and 100mg/L) was investigated and optimized. A three-layer artificial neural network (ANN) model was utilized to predict the malachite green dye removal (%) by Cu-NWs-AC following conduction of 248 experiments. When the training of the ANN was performed, the parameters of ANN model were as follows: linear transfer function (purelin) at output layer, Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm (LMA), and a tangent sigmoid transfer function (tansig) at the hidden layer with 11 neurons. The minimum mean squared error (MSE) of 0.0017 and coefficient of determination (R(2)) of 0.9658 were found for prediction and modeling of dye removal using testing data set. A good agreement between experimental data and predicted data using the ANN model was obtained. Fitting the experimental data on previously optimized condition confirm the suitability of Langmuir isotherm models for their explanation with maximum adsorption capacity of 434.8mg/g at 25°C. Kinetic studies at various adsorbent mass and initial MG concentration show that the MG maximum removal percentage was achieved within 20min. The adsorption of MG follows the pseudo-second-order with a combination of intraparticle diffusion model. PMID:25699703

  18. Isotherm and kinetics study of malachite green adsorption onto copper nanowires loaded on activated carbon: artificial neural network modeling and genetic algorithm optimization.

    PubMed

    Ghaedi, M; Shojaeipour, E; Ghaedi, A M; Sahraei, Reza

    2015-05-01

    In this study, copper nanowires loaded on activated carbon (Cu-NWs-AC) was used as novel efficient adsorbent for the removal of malachite green (MG) from aqueous solution. This new material was synthesized through simple protocol and its surface properties such as surface area, pore volume and functional groups were characterized with different techniques such XRD, BET and FESEM analysis. The relation between removal percentages with variables such as solution pH, adsorbent dosage (0.005, 0.01, 0.015, 0.02 and 0.1g), contact time (1-40min) and initial MG concentration (5, 10, 20, 70 and 100mg/L) was investigated and optimized. A three-layer artificial neural network (ANN) model was utilized to predict the malachite green dye removal (%) by Cu-NWs-AC following conduction of 248 experiments. When the training of the ANN was performed, the parameters of ANN model were as follows: linear transfer function (purelin) at output layer, Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm (LMA), and a tangent sigmoid transfer function (tansig) at the hidden layer with 11 neurons. The minimum mean squared error (MSE) of 0.0017 and coefficient of determination (R(2)) of 0.9658 were found for prediction and modeling of dye removal using testing data set. A good agreement between experimental data and predicted data using the ANN model was obtained. Fitting the experimental data on previously optimized condition confirm the suitability of Langmuir isotherm models for their explanation with maximum adsorption capacity of 434.8mg/g at 25°C. Kinetic studies at various adsorbent mass and initial MG concentration show that the MG maximum removal percentage was achieved within 20min. The adsorption of MG follows the pseudo-second-order with a combination of intraparticle diffusion model.

  19. Isotherm and kinetics study of malachite green adsorption onto copper nanowires loaded on activated carbon: Artificial neural network modeling and genetic algorithm optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghaedi, M.; Shojaeipour, E.; Ghaedi, A. M.; Sahraei, Reza

    2015-05-01

    In this study, copper nanowires loaded on activated carbon (Cu-NWs-AC) was used as novel efficient adsorbent for the removal of malachite green (MG) from aqueous solution. This new material was synthesized through simple protocol and its surface properties such as surface area, pore volume and functional groups were characterized with different techniques such XRD, BET and FESEM analysis. The relation between removal percentages with variables such as solution pH, adsorbent dosage (0.005, 0.01, 0.015, 0.02 and 0.1 g), contact time (1-40 min) and initial MG concentration (5, 10, 20, 70 and 100 mg/L) was investigated and optimized. A three-layer artificial neural network (ANN) model was utilized to predict the malachite green dye removal (%) by Cu-NWs-AC following conduction of 248 experiments. When the training of the ANN was performed, the parameters of ANN model were as follows: linear transfer function (purelin) at output layer, Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm (LMA), and a tangent sigmoid transfer function (tansig) at the hidden layer with 11 neurons. The minimum mean squared error (MSE) of 0.0017 and coefficient of determination (R2) of 0.9658 were found for prediction and modeling of dye removal using testing data set. A good agreement between experimental data and predicted data using the ANN model was obtained. Fitting the experimental data on previously optimized condition confirm the suitability of Langmuir isotherm models for their explanation with maximum adsorption capacity of 434.8 mg/g at 25 °C. Kinetic studies at various adsorbent mass and initial MG concentration show that the MG maximum removal percentage was achieved within 20 min. The adsorption of MG follows the pseudo-second-order with a combination of intraparticle diffusion model.

  20. Activation and propagation of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes on clinical-grade designer artificial antigen presenting cells for adoptive immunotherapy of melanoma

    PubMed Central

    Forget, Marie-Andrée; Malu, Shruti; Liu, Hui; Toth, Christopher; Maiti, Sourindra; Kale, Charuta; Haymaker, Cara; Bernatchez, Chantale; Huls, Helen; Wang, Ena; Marincola, Francesco M.; Hwu, Patrick; Cooper, Laurence J. N.; Radvanyi, Laszlo G.

    2014-01-01

    PURPOSE Adoptive cell therapy (ACT) with autologous tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) is a therapy for metastatic melanoma with response rates up to 50%. However, the generation of the TIL transfer product is challenging, requiring pooled allogeneic normal donor peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) used in vitro as “feeders” to support a rapid expansion protocol (REP). Here, we optimized a platform to propagate TIL to a clinical scale using K562-cells genetically modified to express costimulatory molecules such as CD86, CD137-ligand and membrane-bound IL-15 to function as artificial antigen-presenting cell (aAPC) as an alternative to using PBMC feeders. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN We used aAPC or γ-irradiated PBMC feeders to propagate TIL and measured rates of expansion. The activation and differentiation state was evaluated by flow cytometry and differential gene expression analyses. Clonal diversity was assessed based on pattern of T-cell receptor (TCR) usage. T-cell effector function was measured by evaluation of cytotoxic granule content and killing of target cells. RESULTS The aAPC propagated TIL at numbers equivalent to that found with PBMC feeders, while increasing the frequency of CD8+ T-cell expansion with a comparable effector-memory phenotype. mRNA profiling revealed an up-regulation of genes in the Wnt and stem-cell pathways with the aAPC. The aAPC platform did not skew clonal diversity and CD8+ T cells showed comparable anti-tumor function as those expanded with PBMC feeders. CONCLUSIONS TIL can be rapidly expanded with aAPC to clinical scale generating T cells with similar phenotypic and effector profiles as with PBMC feeders. These data support the clinical-application of aAPC to manufacture TIL for the treatment of melanoma. PMID:25304728

  1. An artificial muscle computer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marc O'Brien, Benjamin; Alexander Anderson, Iain

    2013-03-01

    We have built an artificial muscle computer based on Wolfram's "2, 3" Turing machine architecture, the simplest known universal Turing machine. Our computer uses artificial muscles for its instruction set, output buffers, and memory write and addressing mechanisms. The computer is very slow and large (0.15 Hz, ˜1 m3); however by using only 13 artificial muscle relays, it is capable of solving any computable problem given sufficient memory, time, and reliability. The development of this computer shows that artificial muscles can think—paving the way for soft robots with reflexes like those seen in nature.

  2. Lubrication regimes in lumbar total disc arthroplasty.

    PubMed

    Shaheen, A; Shepherd, D E T

    2007-08-01

    A number of total disc arthroplasty devices have been developed. Some concern has been expressed that wear may be a potential failure mode for these devices, as has been seen with hip arthroplasty. The aim of this paper was to investigate the lubrication regimes that occur in lumbar total disc arthroplasty devices. The disc arthroplasty was modelled as a ball-and-socket joint. Elastohydrodynamic lubrication theory was used to calculate the minimum film thickness of the fluid between the bearing surfaces. The lubrication regime was then determined for different material combinations, size of implant, and trunk velocity. Disc arthroplasties with a metal-polymer or metal-metal material combination operate with a boundary lubrication regime. A ceramic-ceramic material combination has the potential to operate with fluid-film lubrication. Disc arthroplasties with a metal-polymer or metal-metal material combination are likely to generate wear debris. In future, it is worth considering a ceramic-ceramic material combination as this is likely to reduce wear.

  3. Footprint mismatch in lumbar total disc arthroplasty

    PubMed Central

    Michaela, Gstoettner; Denise, Heider; Liebensteiner, Michael

    2008-01-01

    Lumbar disc arthroplasty has become a popular modality for the treatment of degenerative disc disease. The dimensions of the implants are based on early published geometrical measurements of vertebrae; the majority of these were cadaver studies. The fit of the prosthesis in the intervertebral space is of utmost importance. An undersized implant may lead to subsidence, loosening and biomechanical failure due to an incorrect center of rotation. The aim of the present study was to measure the dimensions of lumbar vertebrae based on CT scans and assess the accuracy of match in currently available lumbar disc prostheses. A total of 240 endplates of 120 vertebrae were included in the study. The sagittal and mediolateral diameter of the upper and lower endplates were measured using a digital measuring system. For the levels L4/L5 and L5/S1, an inappropriate size match was noted in 98.8% (Prodisc L) and 97.6% (Charite) with regard to the anteroposterior diameter. Mismatch in the anterior mediolateral diameter was noted in 79.3% (Prodisc L) and 51.2% (Charite) while mismatch in the posterior mediolateral diameter was observed in 91.5% (Prodisc L) and 78% (Charite) of the endplates. Surgeons and manufacturers should be aware of the size mismatch of currently available lumbar disc prostheses, which may endanger the safety and efficacy of the procedure. Larger footprints of currently available total disc arthroplasties are required. PMID:18791748

  4. Mutant DISC1 affects methamphetamine-induced sensitization and conditioned place preference: a comorbidity model

    PubMed Central

    Pogorelov, Vladimir; Nomura, Jun; Kim, Jongho; Kannan, Geetha; Yang, Chunxia; Taniguchi, Yu; Abazyan, Bagrat; Valentine, Heather; Krasnova, Irina N.; Kamiya, Atsushi; Cadet, Jean Lud; Wong, Dean F.; Pletnikov, Mikhail V.

    2011-01-01

    Genetic factors involved in neuroplasticity have been implicated in major psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia, depression, and substance abuse. Given its extended interactome, variants in the Disrupted-In-Schizophrenia-1 (DISC1) gene could contribute to drug addiction and psychiatric diseases. Thus, we evaluated how dominant-negative mutant DISC1 influenced the neurobehavioral and molecular effects of methamphetamine (METH). Control and mutant DISC1 mice were studied before or after treatment with non-toxic escalating dose (ED) of METH. In naïve mice, we assessed METH-induced conditioned place preference (CPP), dopamine (DA) D2 receptor density and the basal and METH-induced activity of DISC1 partners, AKT and GSK-3β in the ventral striatum. In ED treated mice, 4 weeks after METH treatment, we evaluated fear conditioning, depression-like responses in forced swim test, and the basal and METH-induced activity of AKT and GSK-3β in the ventral striatum. We found impairment in METH-induced CPP, decreased DA D2 receptor density and altered METH-induced phosphorylation of AKT and GSK-3β in naïve DISC1 female mice. The ED regimen was not neurotoxic as evidenced by unaltered brain regional monoamine tissue content. Mutant DISC1 significantly delayed METH ED-produced sensitization and affected drug-induced phosphorylation of AKT and GSK-3β in female mice. Our results suggest that perturbations in DISC1 functions in the ventral striatum may impact the molecular mechanisms of reward and sensitization, contributing to comorbidity between drug abuse and major mental diseases. PMID:21315744

  5. Mutant DISC1 affects methamphetamine-induced sensitization and conditioned place preference: a comorbidity model.

    PubMed

    Pogorelov, Vladimir M; Nomura, Jun; Kim, Jongho; Kannan, Geetha; Ayhan, Yavuz; Yang, Chunxia; Taniguchi, Yu; Abazyan, Bagrat; Valentine, Heather; Krasnova, Irina N; Kamiya, Atsushi; Cadet, Jean Lud; Wong, Dean F; Pletnikov, Mikhail V

    2012-03-01

    Genetic factors involved in neuroplasticity have been implicated in major psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia, depression, and substance abuse. Given its extended interactome, variants in the Disrupted-In-Schizophrenia-1 (DISC1) gene could contribute to drug addiction and psychiatric diseases. Thus, we evaluated how dominant-negative mutant DISC1 influenced the neurobehavioral and molecular effects of methamphetamine (METH). Control and mutant DISC1 mice were studied before or after treatment with non-toxic escalating dose (ED) of METH. In naïve mice, we assessed METH-induced conditioned place preference (CPP), dopamine (DA) D2 receptor density and the basal and METH-induced activity of DISC1 partners, AKT and GSK-3β in the ventral striatum. In ED-treated mice, 4 weeks after METH treatment, we evaluated fear conditioning, depression-like responses in forced swim test, and the basal and METH-induced activity of AKT and GSK-3β in the ventral striatum. We found impairment in METH-induced CPP, decreased DA D2 receptor density and altered METH-induced phosphorylation of AKT and GSK-3β in naïve DISC1 female mice. The ED regimen was not neurotoxic as evidenced by unaltered brain regional monoamine tissue content. Mutant DISC1 significantly delayed METH ED-produced sensitization and affected drug-induced phosphorylation of AKT and GSK-3β in female mice. Our results suggest that perturbations in DISC1 functions in the ventral striatum may impact the molecular mechanisms of reward and sensitization, contributing to comorbidity between drug abuse and major mental diseases. PMID:21315744

  6. Synthesis of Organic Matter of Prebiotic Chemistry at the Protoplanetary Disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snytnikov, Valeriy; Stoynovskaya, Olga; Rudina, Nina

    We have carried out scanning electron microscopic examination of CM carbonaceous chondrites meteorites Migey, Murchison, Staroe Boriskino aged more than 4.56 billion years (about 50 million years from the beginning of the formation of the Solar system). Our study confirmed the conclusion of Rozanov, Hoover and other researchers about the presence of microfossils of bacterial origin in the matrix of all these meteorites. Since the time of the Solar system formation is 60 - 100 million years, the primary biocenosis emerged in the protoplanetary disc of the Solar system before meteorites or simultaneously with them. It means that prebiological processes and RNA world appeared even earlier in the circumsolar protoplanetary disc. Most likely, this appearance of prebiotic chemistry takes place nowday in massive and medium-massive discs of the observed young stellar objects (YSO) class 0 and I. The timescale of the transition from chemical to biological evolution took less than 50 million years for the Solar system. Further evolution of individual biocenosis in a protoplanetary disc associated with varying physico-chemical conditions during the formation of the Solar system bodies. Biocenosis on these bodies could remove or develop under the influence of many cosmic factors and geological processes in the case of Earth. To complete the primary biosphere formation in short evolution time - millions of years - requires highly efficient chemical syntheses. In industrial chemistry for the efficient synthesis of ammonia, hydrogen cyanide, methanol and other organic species, that are the precursors to obtain prebiotic compounds, catalytic reactors of high pressure are used. Thus (1) necessary amount of the proper catalyst in (2) high pressure areas of the disc can trigger these intense syntheses. The disc contains the solids with the size from nanoparticle to pebble. Iron and magnesium is catalytically active ingredient for such solids. The puzzle is a way to provide hydrogen

  7. The debris disc around HIP 17439

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schüppler, Christian; Löhne, Torsten; Krivov, Alexander

    2013-07-01

    In the framework of the Herschel Open Time Key Programme DUNES the debris disc around the K2 V star HIP 17439 was observed. In PACS images the disc emission is spatially clearly extended. A simultaneous analysis of photometric observations and radial brightness profiles from the resolved images provides valuable hints for the disc structure. In an analytical model we adopted power laws for the size and radial distribution of the circumstellar dust and tested two different scenarios: (1) a broad dust ring with a radial extent of about 200AU, (2) two independent dust rings separated by a gap of several tens of AU. Both models fit the spectral energy distribution and the radial profiles quite well. In case (1) the parameters found are consistent with dust stemming from an outer planetesimal belt at ~140AU and strong transport mechanisms that drag the particles inward. Model (2) would imply two planetesimal belts, producing a narrow inner and wider outer distribution of dust.

  8. Vertical oscillations of fluid and stellar discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Widrow, Lawrence M.; Bonner, Gage

    2015-06-01

    A satellite galaxy or dark matter subhalo that passes through a stellar disc may excite coherent oscillations in the disc perpendicular to its plane. We determine the properties of these modes for various self-gravitating plane symmetric systems (Spitzer sheets) using the matrix method of Kalnajs. In particular, we find an infinite series of modes for the case of a barotropic fluid. In general, for a collisionless system, there is a double series of modes, which include normal modes and/or Landau-damped oscillations depending on the phase space distribution function of the stars. Even Landau-damped oscillations may decay slowly enough to persist for several hundred Myr. We discuss the implications of these results for the recently discovered vertical perturbations in the kinematics of solar neighbourhood stars and for broader questions surrounding secular phenomena such as spiral structure in disc galaxies.

  9. Liquid Immersion Deep-UV Optical Disc Mastering for Blu-ray Disc Read-Only Memory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neijzen, Jaap H. M.; Meinders, Erwin R.; van Santen, Helmar

    2004-07-01

    The liquid immersion mastering technique has been successfully applied to the mastering of read-only memory (ROM) discs for the Blu-ray disc (BD) system. Replicated discs with a density corresponding to 25 GB in a single layer on a 12 cm disc showed a bottom jitter of less than 5%. Results concerning process latitude and disc uniformity are presented. A full-format 25 GB ROM disc containing over 2 h of high-definition video content has been mastered according to the BD target specification. The results obtained for a reduced channel bit length show the potential of liquid immersion mastering for densities beyond 31 GB per layer.

  10. Disc in Flames: Roles of TNF-α and IL-1β in Intervertebral Disc Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Zariel I.; Schoepflin, Zachary R.; Choi, Hyowon; Shapiro, Irving M.; Risbud, Makarand V.

    2016-01-01

    The intervertebral disc is an important mechanical structure that allows range of motion of the spinal column. Degeneration of the intervertebral disc, incited by aging, traumatic insult, genetic predisposition, or other factors, is often defined by functional and structural changes in the tissue, including excessive breakdown of the extracellular matrix, increased disc cell senescence and death, and compromised biomechanical function of the tissue. Intervertebral disc degeneration is strongly correlated with low back pain, which is a highly prevalent and costly condition, significantly contributing to loss in productivity and health care costs. Disc degeneration is a chronic, progressive condition, and current therapies are limited and often focused on symptomatic pain relief rather than curtailing the progression of the disease. Inflammatory processes, exacerbated by cytokines TNF-α and IL-1β are believed to be key mediators of disc degeneration and low back pain. In this review, we describe the contributions of TNF-α and IL-1β to changes seen during disc degeneration at the cellular and tissue level, new evidence suggesting a link between infection of the spine and low back pain, and the emerging therapeutic modalities aimed at combating these processes. PMID:26388614

  11. Effect of intervertebral disc degeneration on disc cell viability: a numerical investigation.

    PubMed

    Galbusera, Fabio; Mietsch, Antje; Schmidt, Hendrik; Wilke, Hans-Joachim; Neidlinger-Wilke, Cornelia

    2013-01-01

    Degeneration of the intervertebral disc may be initiated and supported by impairment of the nutrition processes of the disc cells. The effects of degenerative changes on cell nutrition are, however, only partially understood. In this work, a finite volume model was used to investigate the effect of endplate calcification, water loss, reduction of disc height and cyclic mechanical loading on the sustainability of the disc cell population. Oxygen, lactate and glucose diffusion, production and consumption were modelled with non-linear coupled partial differential equations. Oxygen and glucose consumption and lactate production were expressed as a function of local oxygen concentration, pH and cell density. The cell viability criteria were based on local glucose concentration and pH. Considering a disc with normal water content, cell death was initiated in the centre of the nucleus for oxygen, glucose, and lactate diffusivities in the cartilaginous endplate below 20% of the physiological values. The initial cell population could not be sustained even in the non-calcified endplates when a reduction of diffusion inside the disc due to water loss was modelled. Alterations in the disc shape such as height loss, which shortens the transport route between the nutrient sources and the cells, and cyclic mechanical loads, could enhance cell nutrition processes. PMID:21970697

  12. Antimicrobial potentials of Mentha longifolia by disc diffusion method.

    PubMed

    Bakht, Jehan; Shaheen, Salma; Shafi, Mohammad

    2014-07-01

    This study was conducted for the assessment of the antimicrobial activities of different solvents extracted samples from the aerial parts of Mentha longifolia against ten microbial species through the disc diffusion assay using two different concentrations of 1 and 2 mg disc1. All extracts from Mentha longifolia showed different ranges of antimicrobial activities. Butanol and ethyl acetate fractions showed inhibitory activities against all microbial species. Methanol fraction showed inhibitory effects against all the tested microbial species except Salmonella typhi. Salmonella typhi was also not controlled by methanol, petroleum ether and dichloromethane extracted samples. The most susceptible gram positive bacteria was Bacillus atropheus and Bacillus subtilis and were inhibited by all extracts and Staphylococus aureus was least susceptible among gram positive bacteria. Klebsiella pneumoniae was the most susceptible gram negative bacterium and Salmonella typhi was highly resistant among the gram negative bacteria. Erwinia carotovora and Agrobacterium tumefaciene were susceptible to all fractions. All fractions showed antifungal activities against Candida albicans except water extracted samples.

  13. Cometary ices in forming protoplanetary disc midplanes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drozdovskaya, Maria N.; Walsh, Catherine; van Dishoeck, Ewine F.; Furuya, Kenji; Marboeuf, Ulysse; Thiabaud, Amaury; Harsono, Daniel; Visser, Ruud

    2016-10-01

    Low-mass protostars are the extrasolar analogues of the natal Solar system. Sophisticated physicochemical models are used to simulate the formation of two protoplanetary discs from the initial prestellar phase, one dominated by viscous spreading and the other by pure infall. The results show that the volatile prestellar fingerprint is modified by the chemistry en route into the disc. This holds relatively independent of initial abundances and chemical parameters: physical conditions are more important. The amount of CO2 increases via the grain-surface reaction of OH with CO, which is enhanced by photodissociation of H2O ice. Complex organic molecules are produced during transport through the envelope at the expense of CH3OH ice. Their abundances can be comparable to that of methanol ice (few per cent of water ice) at large disc radii (R > 30 au). Current Class II disc models may be underestimating the complex organic content. Planet population synthesis models may underestimate the amount of CO2 and overestimate CH3OH ices in planetesimals by disregarding chemical processing between the cloud and disc phases. The overall C/O and C/N ratios differ between the gas and solid phases. The two ice ratios show little variation beyond the inner 10 au and both are nearly solar in the case of pure infall, but both are subsolar when viscous spreading dominates. Chemistry in the protostellar envelope en route to the protoplanetary disc sets the initial volatile and prebiotically significant content of icy planetesimals and cometary bodies. Comets are thus potentially reflecting the provenances of the midplane ices in the solar nebula.

  14. Appearance of Keplerian discs orbiting Kerr superspinars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuchlík, Zdeněk; Schee, Jan

    2010-11-01

    We study optical phenomena related to the appearance of Keplerian accretion discs orbiting Kerr superspinars predicted by string theory. The superspinar exterior is described by standard Kerr naked singularity geometry breaking the black hole limit on the internal angular momentum (spin). We construct local photon escape cones for a variety of orbiting sources that enable us to determine the superspinars silhouette in the case of distant observers. We show that the superspinar silhouette depends strongly on the assumed edge where the external Kerr spacetime is joined to the internal spacetime governed by string theory and significantly differs from the black hole silhouette. The appearance of the accretion disc is strongly dependent on the value of the superspinar spin in both their shape and frequency shift profile. Apparent extension of the disc grows significantly with the growing spin, while the frequency shift grows with the descending spin. This behaviour differs substantially from the appearance of discs orbiting black holes enabling thus, at least in principle, to distinguish clearly the Kerr superspinars and black holes. In vicinity of a Kerr superspinar the non-escaped photons have to be separated to those captured by the superspinar and those being trapped in its strong gravitational field leading to self-illumination of the disc that could even influence its structure and cause self-reflection effect of radiation of the disc. The amount of trapped photons grows with descending superspinar spin. We thus can expect significant self-illumination effects in the field of Kerr superspinars with near-extreme spin a ~ 1.

  15. Symmetry breaking: a compact disc reflected in a mirror

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lúcio Prados Ribeiro, Jair

    2016-11-01

    If a compact disc (CD) is placed in front of a plane mirror, its image displays different colours from the ones observed in the real CD. This fact occurs because a CD surface is a diffraction grating which disperses the incident wavelengths. As the object and its image are seen from different viewing angles, the observed colours are not the same, so the image cannot be considered symmetrical to the object. A theoretical discussion on the topic and a simple experimental activity, adequate to secondary school, are presented.

  16. The small observed scale of AGN-driven outflows, and inside-out disc quenching

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zubovas, Kastytis; King, Andrew

    2016-11-01

    Observations of massive outflows with detectable central active galactic nuclei (AGN) typically find them within radii ≲10 kpc. We show that this apparent size restriction is a natural result of AGN driving if this process injects total energy only of the order of the gas binding energy to the outflow, and the AGN varies over time (`flickers') as suggested in recent work. After the end of all AGN activity, the outflow continues to expand to larger radii, powered by the thermal expansion of the remnant-shocked AGN wind. We suggest that on average, outflows should be detected further from the nucleus in more massive galaxies. In massive gas-rich galaxies, these could be several tens of kpc in radius. We also consider the effect that pressure of such outflows has on a galaxy disc. In moderately gas-rich discs, with gas-to-baryon fraction <0.2, the outflow may induce star formation significant enough to be distinguished from quiescent by an apparently different normalization of the Kennicutt-Schmidt law. The star formation enhancement is probably stronger in the outskirts of galaxy discs, so coasting outflows might be detected by their effects upon the disc even after the driving AGN has shut off. We compare our results to the recent inference of inside-out quenching of star formation in galaxy discs.

  17. Artificial insemination in poultry

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Artificial insemination is a relative simple yet powerful tool geneticists can employ for the propagation of economically important traits in livestock and poultry. In this chapter, we address the fundamental methods of the artificial insemination of poultry, including semen collection, semen evalu...

  18. Artificial intelligence: Recent developments

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1987-01-01

    This book presents the papers given at a conference on artificial intelligence. Topics considered at the conference included knowledge representation for expert systems, the use of robots in underwater vehicles for resource management, precision logic, an expert system for arc welding, data base management, a knowledge based approach to fault trees, and computer-aided manufacturing using simulation combined with artificial intelligence.

  19. P-mode oscillation on slim discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Li; Lu, Ju-Fu

    2016-02-01

    We numerically investigate the thermally unstable accretion discs around spinning black holes with different spins. We adopted an additional evolutionary viscosity equation to replace the standard alpha-prescription based on the results of two MHD simulations. We find an interesting oscillation when accretion switches to slim disc mode. The oscillation arises from the sonic point of accretion flow and propagates outwards. We mimic the bolometric light-curve and find a series of harmonics on its power spectrum. The frequency ratio of those harmonics is a regular integer series. The lowest frequency of the harmonics is identical to the prediction of trapped p-mode in QPO theory.

  20. Disc valve for sampling erosive process streams

    DOEpatents

    Mrochek, J.E.; Dinsmore, S.R.; Chandler, E.W.

    1986-01-07

    A four-port disc valve is described for sampling erosive, high temperature process streams. A rotatable disc defining opposed first and second sampling cavities rotates between fired faceplates defining flow passageways positioned to be alternatively in axial alignment with the first and second cavities. Silicon carbide inserts and liners composed of [alpha] silicon carbide are provided in the faceplates and in the sampling cavities to limit erosion while providing lubricity for a smooth and precise operation when used under harsh process conditions. 1 fig.

  1. Progression of a lumbar disc extrusion.

    PubMed

    Crowell, Michael S; Alitz, Curtis

    2014-11-01

    The patient was a 34-year-old woman who was referred to a physical therapist for a chief complaint of progressively worsening right buttock pain with paresthesias of the right posterior thigh and calf. Prior magnetic resonance imaging of the patient's lumbar spine revealed a large left paracentral disc extrusion at L5-S1. Following physical therapist intervention, the patient reported a new onset of left posterior thigh pain, with paresthesias of the dorsolateral aspect of the left foot. Repeat magnetic resonance imaging of the patient's lumbar spine revealed an increase in the size of the disc extrusion at L5-S1. PMID:25361862

  2. The effectiveness of percutaneous laser disc decompression for the prolapsed lumbar intervertebral disc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mu, Ming Wei; Liu, Wei; Feng, Wei; Ma, Nan

    2009-07-01

    Objective: to investigate the role of associated factors in the effectiveness of laser treatment for prolapsed lumber intervertebral disc. Method: 302 prolapsed lumber intervertebral discs in 212 patients were treated with percutaneous laser disc decompression (PLDD). Patients were followed up by 12month, the associated factors which affecting the effectiveness of treatment, ie age, duration of illness were analyzed. Results: Punctual Success rate was 100%. After 12 month's follow up, 86% successful outcomes were obtained, in which 93% successful outcomes were obtained in patients less than 50 years old, 92% successful outcomes was obtained in the patients whose duration of illness less than 1 year.

  3. Onion artificial muscles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Chien-Chun; Shih, Wen-Pin; Chang, Pei-Zen; Lai, Hsi-Mei; Chang, Shing-Yun; Huang, Pin-Chun; Jeng, Huai-An

    2015-05-01

    Artificial muscles are soft actuators with the capability of either bending or contraction/elongation subjected to external stimulation. However, there are currently no artificial muscles that can accomplish these actions simultaneously. We found that the single layered, latticed microstructure of onion epidermal cells after acid treatment became elastic and could simultaneously stretch and bend when an electric field was applied. By modulating the magnitude of the voltage, the artificial muscle made of onion epidermal cells would deflect in opposing directions while either contracting or elongating. At voltages of 0-50 V, the artificial muscle elongated and had a maximum deflection of -30 μm; at voltages of 50-1000 V, the artificial muscle contracted and deflected 1.0 mm. The maximum force response is 20 μN at 1000 V.

  4. Artificial cells for cell and organ replacements.

    PubMed

    Chang, Thomas Ming Swi

    2004-03-01

    The artificial cell is a Canadian invention (Chang, Science, 1964). This principle is being actively investigated for use in cell and organ replacements. The earliest routine clinical use of artificial cells is in the form of coated activated charcoal for hemoperfusion for use in the removal of drugs, and toxins and waste in uremia and liver failure. Encapsulated cells are being studied for the treatment of diabetes, liver failure, and kidney failure, and the use of encapsulated genetically-engineered cells is being investigated for gene therapy. Blood substitutes based on modified hemoglobin are already in Phase III clinical trials in patients, with as much as 20 units being infused into each patient during trauma surgery. Artificial cells containing enzymes are being developed for clinical trial in hereditary enzyme deficiency diseases and other diseases. The artificial cell is also being investigated for drug delivery and for other uses in biotechnology, chemical engineering, and medicine.

  5. Excess BMP Signaling in Heterotopic Cartilage Forming in Prg4-null TMJ Discs.

    PubMed

    Bechtold, T E; Saunders, C; Mundy, C; Um, H; Decker, R S; Salhab, I; Kurio, N; Billings, P C; Pacifici, M; Nah, H D; Koyama, E

    2016-03-01

    Heterotopic cartilage develops in certain pathologic conditions, including those affecting the human temporomandibular joint (TMJ), but the underlying molecular mechanisms remain obscure. This is in part due to the fact that a reliable animal model of such TMJ diseases is not available. Here, we show that aberrant chondrocyte differentiation and ectopic cartilage formation occur spontaneously in proteoglycan 4 (Prg4) mutant TMJ discs without further invasive procedure. By 2 mo of age, mutant disc cells displayed chondrocyte transdifferentiation, accompanied by strong expression of cartilage master gene Sox9 and matrix genes aggrecan and type II collagen. By 6 mo, heterotopic cartilage had formed in the discs and expressed cartilage hypertrophic markers Runx2 and ColX. The ectopic tissue grew in size over time and exhibited regional mineralization by 12 mo. Bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling was activated with the ectopic chondrogenic cells and chondrocytes, as indicated by phosphorylated Smad 1/5/8 nuclear staining and by elevated expression of Bmp2, Bmpr1b, Bmpr2, and BMP signaling target genes. Likewise, we found that upon treatment with recombinant human BMP 2 in high-density micromass culture, mutant disc cells differentiated into chondrocytes and synthesized cartilage matrix more robustly than control cells. Importantly, a specific kinase inhibitor of BMP receptors drastically attenuated chondrogenesis in recombinant human BMP 2-treated mutant disc cultures. Unexpectedly, we found that Prg4 was expressed at joint-associated sites, including disc/muscle insertion and muscle/bone interface, and all these structures were abnormal in Prg4 mutants. Our data indicate that Prg4 is needed for TMJ disc integrity and function and that its absence leads to ectopic chondrogenesis and cartilage formation in conjunction with abnormal BMP signaling. Our findings imply that the BMP signaling pathway could be a potential therapeutic target for prevention or inhibition

  6. Thanatology in protoplanetary discs. The combined influence of Ohmic, Hall, and ambipolar diffusion on dead zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lesur, Geoffroy; Kunz, Matthew W.; Fromang, Sébastien

    2014-06-01

    Protoplanetary discs are poorly ionised due to their low temperatures and high column densities and are therefore subject to three "non-ideal" magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) effects: Ohmic dissipation, ambipolar diffusion, and the Hall effect. The existence of magnetically driven turbulence in these discs has been a central question since the discovery of the magnetorotational instability (MRI). Early models considered Ohmic diffusion only and led to a scenario of layered accretion, in which a magnetically "dead" zone in the disc midplane is embedded within magnetically "active" surface layers at distances of about 1-10 au from the central protostellar object. Recent work has suggested that a combination of Ohmic dissipation and ambipolar diffusion can render both the midplane and surface layers of the disc inactive and that torques due to magnetically driven outflows are required to explain the observed accretion rates. We reassess this picture by performing three-dimensional numerical simulations that include all three non-ideal MHD effects for the first time. We find that the Hall effect can generically "revive" dead zones by producing a dominant azimuthal magnetic field and a large-scale Maxwell stress throughout the midplane, provided that the angular velocity and magnetic field satisfy Ω·B > 0. The attendant large magnetic pressure modifies the vertical density profile and substantially increases the disc scale height beyond its hydrostatic value. Outflows are produced but are not necessary to explain accretion rates ≲ 10-7 M⊙ yr-1. The flow in the disc midplane is essentially laminar, suggesting that dust sedimentation may be efficient. These results demonstrate that if the MRI is relevant for driving mass accretion in protoplanetary discs, one must include the Hall effect to obtain even qualitatively correct results. Appendices are available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org

  7. Revealing the accretion disc corona in Mrk 335 with multi-epoch X-ray spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keek, L.; Ballantyne, D. R.

    2016-03-01

    Active galactic nuclei host an accretion disc with an X-ray producing corona around a supermassive black hole. In bright sources, such as the Seyfert 1 galaxy Mrk 335, reflection of the coronal emission off the accretion disc has been observed. Reflection produces spectral features such as an Fe Kα emission line, which allow for properties of the inner accretion disc and the corona to be constrained. We perform a multi-epoch spectral analysis of all XMM-Newton, Suzaku, and NuSTAR observations of Mrk 335, and we optimize our fitting procedure to unveil correlations between the Eddington ratio and the spectral parameters. We find that the disc's ionization parameter correlates strongly with the Eddington ratio: the inner disc is more strongly ionized at higher flux. The slope of the correlation is less steep than previously predicted. Furthermore, the cut-off of the power-law spectrum increases in energy with the Eddington ratio, whereas the reflection fraction exhibits a decrease. We interpret this behaviour as geometrical changes of the corona as a function of the accretion rate. Below ˜10 per cent of the Eddington limit, the compact and optically thick corona is located close to the inner disc, whereas at higher accretion rates the corona is likely optically thin and extends vertically further away from the disc surface. Furthermore, we find a soft excess that consists of two components. In addition to a contribution from reflection in low ionization states, a second component is present that traces the overall flux.

  8. The role of interleukin-1 in the pathogenesis of human Intervertebral disc degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Le Maitre, Christine Lyn; Freemont, Anthony J; Hoyland, Judith Alison

    2005-01-01

    In this study, we investigated the hypotheses that in human intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration there is local production of the cytokine IL-1, and that this locally produced cytokine can induce the cellular and matrix changes of IVD degeneration. Immunohistochemistry was used to localize five members of the IL-1 family (IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-1Ra (IL-1 receptor antagonist), IL-1RI (IL-1 receptor, type I), and ICE (IL-1β-converting enzyme)) in non-degenerate and degenerate human IVDs. In addition, cells derived from non-degenerate and degenerate human IVDs were challenged with IL-1 agonists and the response was investigated using real-time PCR for a number of matrix-degrading enzymes, matrix proteins, and members of the IL-1 family. This study has shown that native disc cells from non-degenerate and degenerate discs produced the IL-1 agonists, antagonist, the active receptor, and IL-1β-converting enzyme. In addition, immunopositivity for these proteins, with the exception of IL-1Ra, increased with severity of degeneration. We have also shown that IL-1 treatment of human IVD cells resulted in increased gene expression for the matrix-degrading enzymes (MMP 3 (matrix metalloproteinase 3), MMP 13 (matrix metalloproteinase 13), and ADAMTS-4 (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs)) and a decrease in the gene expression for matrix genes (aggrecan, collagen II, collagen I, and SOX6). In conclusion we have shown that IL-1 is produced in the degenerate IVD. It is synthesized by native disc cells, and treatment of human disc cells with IL-1 induces an imbalance between catabolic and anabolic events, responses that represent the changes seen during disc degeneration. Therefore, inhibiting IL-1 could be an important therapeutic target for preventing and reversing disc degeneration. PMID:15987475

  9. Cell transplantation in lumbar spine disc degeneration disease

    PubMed Central

    Hohaus, C.; Ganey, T. M.; Minkus, Y.

    2008-01-01

    Low back pain is an extremely common symptom, affecting nearly three-quarters of the population sometime in their life. Given that disc herniation is thought to be an extension of progressive disc degeneration that attends the normal aging process, seeking an effective therapy that staves off disc degeneration has been considered a logical attempt to reduce back pain. The most apparent cellular and biochemical changes attributable to degeneration include a decrease in cell density in the disc that is accompanied by a reduction in synthesis of cartilage-specific extracellular matrix components. With this in mind, one therapeutic strategy would be to replace, regenerate, or augment the intervertebral disc cell population, with a goal of correcting matrix insufficiencies and restoring normal segment biomechanics. Biological restoration through the use of autologous disc chondrocyte transplantation offers a potential to achieve functional integration of disc metabolism and mechanics. We designed an animal study using the dog as our model to investigate this hypothesis by transplantation of autologous disc-derived chondrocytes into degenerated intervertebral discs. As a result we demonstrated that disc cells remained viable after transplantation; transplanted disc cells produced an extracellular matrix that contained components similar to normal intervertebral disc tissue; a statistically significant correlation between transplanting cells and retention of disc height could displayed. Following these results the Euro Disc Randomized Trial was initiated to embrace a representative patient group with persistent symptoms that had not responded to conservative treatment where an indication for surgical treatment was given. In the interim analyses we evaluated that patients who received autologous disc cell transplantation had greater pain reduction at 2 years compared with patients who did not receive cells following their discectomy surgery and discs in patients that

  10. Adipose-Derived Stromal Cells Protect Intervertebral Disc Cells in Compression: Implications for Stem Cell Regenerative Disc Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Zhen; Luo, Beier; Liu, Zhi-Heng; Samartzis, Dino; Liu, Zhongyang; Gao, Bo; Huang, Liangliang; Luo, Zhuo-Jing

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Abnormal biomechanics plays a role in intervertebral disc degeneration. Adipose-derived stromal cells (ADSCs) have been implicated in disc integrity; however, their role in the setting of mechanical stimuli upon the disc's nucleus pulposus (NP) remains unknown. As such, the present study aimed to evaluate the influence of ADSCs upon NP cells in compressive load culture. Methods: Human NP cells were cultured in compressive load at 3.0MPa for 48 hours with or without ADSCs co-culture (the ratio was 50:50). We used flow cytometry, live/dead staining and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to evaluate cell death, and determined the expression of specific apoptotic pathways by characterizing the expression of activated caspases-3, -8 and -9. We further used real-time (RT-) PCR and immunostaining to determine the expression of the extracellular matrix (ECM), mediators of matrix degradation (e.g. MMPs, TIMPs and ADAMTSs), pro-inflammatory factors and NP cell phenotype markers. Results: ADSCs inhibited human NP cell apoptosis via suppression of activated caspase-9 and caspase-3. Furthermore, ADSCs protected NP cells from the degradative effects of compressive load by significantly up-regulating the expression of ECM genes (SOX9, COL2A1 and ACAN), tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases (TIMPs) genes (TIMP-1 and TIMP-2) and cytokeratin 8 (CK8) protein expression. Alternatively, ADSCs showed protective effect by inhibiting compressive load mediated increase of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs; MMP-3 and MMP-13), disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs (ADAMTSs; ADAMTS-1 and 5), and pro-inflammatory factors (IL-1beta, IL-6, TGF-beta1 and TNF-alpha). Conclusions: Our study is the first in vitro study assessing the impact of ADSCs on NP cells in an un-physiological mechanical stimulation culture environment. Our study noted that ADSCs protect compressive load induced NP cell death and degradation by inhibition of activated caspase-9 and -3

  11. Gaseous discs at intermediate redshifts from kinematic data modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kipper, R.; Tamm, A.; Tenjes, P.; Tempel, E.

    2016-10-01

    Our purpose is to measure thickness of gaseous discs in 0 < z < 1.2 galaxies. As gas dispersions are sensitive to scale height of gaseous discs, we model the kinematics of galaxies using Jeans equations. The resulting thicknesses of gaseous discs at higher redshifts are more thicker (and arbitrary) while nearby ones are thinner. We also found that clumpiness of galaxy is a possible indicator of the gas disc thickness.

  12. Interactive Optical Disc Systems: Part 1: Analog Storage.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hessler, David W.

    1984-01-01

    Details distinction between digital and analog data, advantages of analog storage, and optical disc use to store analog data. Configuration and potential of three levels of laser disc systems are explained. Selection of display devices for use with laser disc systems and accessing audio data are addressed. (Continued in next issue.) (EJS)

  13. DISC1 as a therapeutic target for mental illnesses

    PubMed Central

    Hikida, Takatoshi; Gamo, Nao J.; Sawa, Akira

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Many genetic studies have indicated that DISC1 is not merely “disrupted-in-schizophrenia,” but is more generally implicated in various brain dysfunctions associated with aberrant neurodevelopment and intracellular signaling pathways. Thus, the DISC1 gene is mildly associated with a variety of brain disorders, including schizophrenia, mood disorders, and autism. This novel concept fits with the results from biological studies of DISC1, which include cell and animal models. Areas covered We review the molecular structure and functions of DISC1, particularly those in conjunction with its important interactors. Functions of these interacting proteins are also introduced under the concept of the “DISC1 interactome.” Finally, we discuss how the DISC1 interactome can provide potential therapeutic targets for mental illnesses. Expert opinion Modulation of DISC1 stability and post-transcriptional modifications may be key targets to address DISC1-related pathology. In addition, modulation of DISC1 interactors and the mechanisms of their interactions with DISC1 may also provide drug targets. Disc1 rodent models can subsequently be used as templates for in vivo validations of compounds designed for DISC1 and its interacting proteins. Furthermore, these rodents will serve as genetic models for schizophrenia and related conditions, especially in conjunction with their pathologies during the neurodevelopmental trajectory. PMID:23130881

  14. Morning glory disc anomaly with Chiari type I malformation.

    PubMed

    Arlow, Tim; Arepalli, Sruthi; Flanders, Adam E; Shields, Carol L

    2014-04-30

    Morning glory disc anomaly is a rare optic nerve dysplasia associated with various neovascular abnormalities. Due to these associations, children with morning glory disc anomaly have brain imaging and angiography to detect other congenital defects. The authors report the case of an infant with morning glory disc anomaly and coexisting Chiari type I malformation.

  15. Convergence of smoothed particle hydrodynamics simulations of self-gravitating accretion discs: sensitivity to the implementation of radiative cooling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rice, W. K. M.; Forgan, D. H.; Armitage, P. J.

    2012-02-01

    Recent simulations of self-gravitating accretion discs, carried out using a three-dimensional smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) code by Meru & Bate, have been interpreted as implying that three-dimensional global discs fragment much more easily than would be expected from a two-dimensional local model. Subsequently, global and local two-dimensional models have been shown to display similar fragmentation properties, leaving it unclear whether the three-dimensional results reflect a physical effect or a numerical problem associated with the treatment of cooling or artificial viscosity in SPH. Here, we study how fragmentation of self-gravitating disc flows in SPH depends upon the implementation of cooling. We run disc simulations that compare a simple cooling scheme, in which each particle loses energy based upon its internal energy per unit mass, with a method in which the cooling is derived from a smoothed internal energy density field. For the simple per particle cooling scheme, we find a significant increase in the minimum cooling time-scale for fragmentation with increasing resolution, matching previous results. Switching to smoothed cooling, however, results in lower critical cooling time-scales, and tentative evidence for convergence at the highest spatial resolution tested. We conclude that precision studies of fragmentation using SPH require careful consideration of how cooling (and, probably, artificial viscosity) is implemented, and that the apparent non-convergence of the fragmentation boundary seen in prior simulations is likely a numerical effect. In real discs, where cooling is physically smoothed by radiative transfer effects, the fragmentation boundary is probably displaced from the two-dimensional value by a factor that is only of the order of unity.

  16. Prognosis of intervertebral disc loss from diagnosis of degenerative disc disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, S.; Lin, A.; Tay, K.; Romano, W.; Osman, Said

    2015-03-01

    Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD) is one of the most common causes of low back pain, and is a major factor in limiting the quality of life of an individual usually as they enter older stages of life, the disc degeneration reduces the shock absorption available which in turn causes pain. Disc loss is one of the central processes in the pathogenesis of DDD. In this study, we investigated whether the image texture features quantified from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) could be appropriate markers for diagnosis of DDD and prognosis of inter-vertebral disc loss. The main objective is to use simple image based biomarkers to perform prognosis of spinal diseases using non-invasive procedures. Our results from 65 subjects proved the higher success rates of the combination marker compared to the individual markers and in the future, we will extend the study to other spine regions to allow prognosis and diagnosis of DDD for a wider region.

  17. The Substitution-Elimination Mechanistic Disc Method

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Buonora, Paul T.; Yu Jin Lim

    2004-01-01

    A method designed to facilitate prediction of mechanism and products by developing critical thinking skills and reducing memorization is presented. The mechanistic disc method requiring students to utilize their understanding of charge stabilization, structural organic chemistry, and the fundamental mechanisms of aliphatic substitution and…

  18. Frictional Torque on a Rotating Disc

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mungan, Carl E.

    2012-01-01

    Resistance to motion often includes a dry frictional term independent of the speed of an object and a fluid drag term varying linearly with speed in the viscous limit. (At higher speeds, quadratic drag can also occur.) Here, measurements are performed for an aluminium disc mounted on bearings that is given an initial twist and allowed to spin…

  19. Disc valve for sampling erosive process streams

    DOEpatents

    Mrochek, J.E.; Dinsmore, S.R.; Chandler, E.W.

    1984-08-16

    This is a patent for a disc-type, four-port sampling valve for service with erosive high temperature process streams. Inserts and liners of ..cap alpha..-silicon carbide respectively, in the faceplates and in the sampling cavities, limit erosion while providing lubricity for a smooth and precise operation. 1 fig.

  20. DISC-BASED IMMUNOASSAY MICROARRAYS. (R825433)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Microarray technology as applied to areas that include genomics, diagnostics, environmental, and drug discovery, is an interesting research topic for which different chip-based devices have been developed. As an alternative, we have explored the principle of compact disc-based...

  1. Optical Disc Technology for Information Management.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brumm, Eugenia K.

    1991-01-01

    This summary of the literature on document image processing from 1988-90 focuses on WORM (write once read many) technology and on rewritable (i.e., erasable) optical discs, and excludes CD-ROM. Highlights include vendors and products, standards, comparisons of storage media, software, legal issues, records management, indexing, and computer…

  2. Artificial intelligence in medicine.

    PubMed Central

    Ramesh, A. N.; Kambhampati, C.; Monson, J. R. T.; Drew, P. J.

    2004-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Artificial intelligence is a branch of computer science capable of analysing complex medical data. Their potential to exploit meaningful relationship with in a data set can be used in the diagnosis, treatment and predicting outcome in many clinical scenarios. METHODS: Medline and internet searches were carried out using the keywords 'artificial intelligence' and 'neural networks (computer)'. Further references were obtained by cross-referencing from key articles. An overview of different artificial intelligent techniques is presented in this paper along with the review of important clinical applications. RESULTS: The proficiency of artificial intelligent techniques has been explored in almost every field of medicine. Artificial neural network was the most commonly used analytical tool whilst other artificial intelligent techniques such as fuzzy expert systems, evolutionary computation and hybrid intelligent systems have all been used in different clinical settings. DISCUSSION: Artificial intelligence techniques have the potential to be applied in almost every field of medicine. There is need for further clinical trials which are appropriately designed before these emergent techniques find application in the real clinical setting. PMID:15333167

  3. Evaluation of the color stability of two techniques for reproducing artificial irides after microwave polymerization

    PubMed Central

    GOIATO, Marcelo Coelho; dos SANTOS, Daniela Micheline; MORENO, Amália; GENNARI-FILHO, Humberto; PELLIZZER, Eduardo Piza

    2011-01-01

    The use of ocular prostheses for ophthalmic patients aims to rebuild facial aesthetics and provide an artificial substitute to the visual organ. Natural intemperate conditions promote discoloration of artificial irides and many studies have attempted to produce irides with greater chromatic paint durability using different paint materials. Objectives The present study evaluated the color stability of artificial irides obtained with two techniques (oil painting and digital image) and submitted to microwave polymerization. Material and Methods Forty samples were fabricated simulating ocular prostheses. Each sample was constituted by one disc of acrylic resin N1 and one disc of colorless acrylic resin with the iris interposed between the discs. The irides in brown and blue color were obtained by oil painting or digital image. The color stability was determined by a reflection spectrophotometer and measurements were taken before and after microwave polymerization. Statistical analysis of the techniques for reproducing artificial irides was performed by applying the normal data distribution test followed by 2-way ANOVA and Tukey HSD test (α=.05). Results Chromatic alterations occurred in all specimens and statistically significant differences were observed between the oil-painted samples and those obtained by digital imaging. There was no statistical difference between the brown and blue colors. Independently of technique, all samples suffered color alterations after microwave polymerization. Conclusion The digital imaging technique for reproducing irides presented better color stability after microwave polymerization. PMID:21625733

  4. Clinical and Radiological Characteristics of Lumbosacral Lateral Disc Herniation in Comparison With Those of Medial Disc Herniation

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jung Hwan; Lee, Sang-Ho

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Lateral disc herniation (foraminal and extra foraminal) has clinical characteristics that are different from those of medial disc herniation (central and subarticular), including older age, more frequent radicular pain, and neurologic deficits. This is supposedly because lateral disc herniation mechanically irritates or compresses the exiting nerve root or dorsal root ganglion inside of a narrow canal more directly than medial disc herniation. The purpose of this study was to investigate clinical and radiological characteristics of lateral disc herniation in comparison with medial disc herniation. The 352 subjects diagnosed with localized lumbosacral disc herniation and followed up for at least 12 months after completion of treatment were included and divided into medial and lateral disc herniation groups, according to the anatomical location of the herniated disc in axial plain of magnetic resonance image. Clinical and radiological data were obtained and compared between the two groups. The lateral group included 74 (21%) patients and the medial group included 278 (79%). Mean age of the lateral group was significantly higher than that in the medial group. The lateral group showed a significantly larger proportion of patients with radiating leg pain and multiple levels of disc herniations than the medial group. No significant differences were found in terms of gender, duration of pain, pretreatment numeric rating scale, severity of disc herniation (protrusion and extrusion), and presence of weakness in leg muscles. The proportion of patients who underwent surgery was not significantly different between the 2 groups. However, the proportion of patients who accomplished successful pain reduction after treatment was significantly smaller in the lateral than in the medial group. In conclusion, patients with lateral disc herniation were older and had larger proportion of radiating leg pain than those with medial disc herniation. Lateral disc herniation was more

  5. Clinical and Radiological Characteristics of Lumbosacral Lateral Disc Herniation in Comparison With Those of Medial Disc Herniation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jung Hwan; Lee, Sang-Ho

    2016-02-01

    Lateral disc herniation (foraminal and extra foraminal) has clinical characteristics that are different from those of medial disc herniation (central and subarticular), including older age, more frequent radicular pain, and neurologic deficits. This is supposedly because lateral disc herniation mechanically irritates or compresses the exiting nerve root or dorsal root ganglion inside of a narrow canal more directly than medial disc herniation. The purpose of this study was to investigate clinical and radiological characteristics of lateral disc herniation in comparison with medial disc herniation. The 352 subjects diagnosed with localized lumbosacral disc herniation and followed up for at least 12 months after completion of treatment were included and divided into medial and lateral disc herniation groups, according to the anatomical location of the herniated disc in axial plain of magnetic resonance image. Clinical and radiological data were obtained and compared between the two groups. The lateral group included 74 (21%) patients and the medial group included 278 (79%). Mean age of the lateral group was significantly higher than that in the medial group. The lateral group showed a significantly larger proportion of patients with radiating leg pain and multiple levels of disc herniations than the medial group. No significant differences were found in terms of gender, duration of pain, pretreatment numeric rating scale, severity of disc herniation (protrusion and extrusion), and presence of weakness in leg muscles. The proportion of patients who underwent surgery was not significantly different between the 2 groups. However, the proportion of patients who accomplished successful pain reduction after treatment was significantly smaller in the lateral than in the medial group. In conclusion, patients with lateral disc herniation were older and had larger proportion of radiating leg pain than those with medial disc herniation. Lateral disc herniation was more

  6. Grain size segregation in debris discs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thebault, P.; Kral, Q.; Augereau, J.-C.

    2014-01-01

    Context. In most debris discs, dust grain dynamics is strongly affected by stellar radiation pressure. Because this mechanism is size-dependent, we expect dust grains to be spatially segregated according to their sizes. However, because of the complex interplay between radiation pressure, grain processing by collisions, and dynamical perturbations, this spatial segregation of the particle size distribution (PSD) has proven difficult to investigate and quantify with numerical models. Aims: We propose to thoroughly investigate this problem by using a new-generation code that can handle some of the complex coupling between dynamical and collisional effects. We intend to explore how PSDs behave in both unperturbed discs at rest and in discs pertubed by planetary objects. Methods: We used the DyCoSS code to investigate the coupled effect of collisions, radiation pressure, and dynamical perturbations in systems that have reached a steady-state. We considered two setups: a narrow ring perturbed by an exterior planet, and an extended disc into which a planet is embedded. For both setups we considered an additional unperturbed case without a planet. We also investigated the effect of possible spatial size segregation on disc images at different wavelengths. Results: We find that PSDs are always spatially segregated. The only case for which the PSD follows a standard dn ∝ s-3.5ds law is for an unperturbed narrow ring, but only within the parent-body ring itself. For all other configurations, the size distributions can strongly depart from such power laws and have steep spatial gradients. As an example, the geometrical cross-section of the disc is very rarely dominated by the smallest grains on bound orbits, as it is expected to be in standard PSDs in sq with q ≤ -3. Although the exact profiles and spatial variations of PSDs are a complex function of the set-up that is considered, we are still able to derive some reliable results that will be useful for image or SED